Ocean seawater chemistry linked with periods of global cooling, sharp changes from greenhouse to icehouse climate

From the University of Toronto , something quite unexpected.

Scientists connect seawater chemistry with climate change and evolution

TORONTO, ON – Humans get most of the blame for climate change, with little attention paid to the contribution of other natural forces. Now, scientists from the University of Toronto and the University of California Santa Cruz are shedding light on one potential cause of the cooling trend of the past 45 million years that has everything to do with the chemistry of the world’s oceans.

Caption: This is a satellite view of the Zagros mountain belt in western Iran. The range forms part of the most extensive belt of water-soluble gypsum on Earth, stretching from Oman to Pakistan, and well into Western India. Scientists suggest that the dissolution of ancient salt deposits caused drastic changes in seawater chemistry, which may have triggered long-term global cooling. Credit: US Geological Survey/Center for Earth Resources Observation and Science

“Seawater chemistry is characterized by long phases of stability, which are interrupted by short intervals of rapid change,” says Professor Ulrich Wortmann in the Department of Earth Sciences at the University of Toronto, lead author of a study to be published in Science this week. “We’ve established a new framework that helps us better interpret evolutionary trends and climate change over long periods of time. The study focuses on the past 130 million years, but similar interactions have likely occurred through the past 500 million years.”

Wortmann and co-author Adina Paytan of the Institute of Marine Sciences at the University of California Santa Cruz point to the collision between India and Eurasia approximately 50 million years ago as one example of an interval of rapid change. This collision enhanced dissolution of the most extensive belt of water-soluble gypsum on Earth, stretching from Oman to Pakistan, and well into Western India – remnants of which are well exposed in the Zagros mountains.

Caption: This is the Zagros mountain belt in western Iran as seen from the space shuttle Atlantis. The range forms part of the most extensive belt of water-soluble gypsum on Earth, stretching from Oman to Pakistan, and well into Western India. Scientists suggest that the dissolution of ancient salt deposits caused drastic changes in seawater chemistry, which may have triggered long-term global cooling. Credit: Photo courtesy of NASA

The authors suggest that the dissolution or creation of such massive gyspum deposits will change the sulfate content of the ocean, and that this will affect the amount of sulfate aerosols in the atmosphere and thus climate. “We propose that times of high sulfate concentrations in ocean water correlate with global cooling, just as times of low concentration correspond with greenhouse periods,” says Paytan.

“When India and Eurasia collided, it caused dissolution of ancient salt deposits which resulted in drastic changes in seawater chemistry,” Paytan continues. “This may have led to the demise of the Eocene epoch – the warmest period of the modern-day Cenozoic era – and the transition from a greenhouse to icehouse climate, culminating in the beginning of the rapid expansion of the Antarctic ice sheet.”

The researchers combined data of past seawater sulfur composition, assembled by Paytan in 2004, with Wortmann’s recent discovery of the strong link between marine sulfate concentrations and carbon and phosphorus cycling. They were able to explain the seawater sulfate isotope record as a result of massive changes to the accumulation and weathering of gyspum – the mineral form of hydrated calcium sulfate.

“While it has been known for a long time that gyspum deposits can be formed and destroyed rapidly, the effect of these processes on seawater chemistry has been overlooked,” says Wortmann. “The idea represents a paradigm shift in our understanding of how ocean chemistry changes over time and how these changes are linked to climate.”

###

The findings are reported in the paper “Rapid Variability of Seawater Chemistry over the Past 130 Million Years.” The research is supported by a Discovery Grant to Wortmann from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, and a National Science Foundation CAREER award to Paytan. Data used in the research was collected through the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) and facilitated by the United States Implementing Organization (USIO) and the Canadian Consortium for Ocean Drilling (CCOD).

About the IODP & the CCOD

The Integrated Ocean DrillingProgram (IODP) is an international research program dedicated to advancing scientific understanding of the Earth through drilling, coring, and monitoring the subseafloor. The JOIDES Resolution is a scientific research vessel managed by the U.S. Implementing Organization of IODP (USIO). Texas A&M University, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University and the Consortium for Ocean Leadership together comprise the USIO. IODP is supported by two lead agencies: the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) and Japan’s Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology. Additional program support comes from the European Consortium for Ocean Research Drilling (ECORD), the Australia-New Zealand IODP Consortium (ANZIC), India’s Ministry of Earth Sciences, the People’s Republic of China (Ministry of Science and Technology), and the Korea Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources. For more information, visit www.iodp.org.

The Canadian Consortium for Ocean Drilling (CCOD) is a consortium composed of Canadian universities formed to facilitate, support and encourage Canada’s participation in IODP.

==============================================================

Science 20 July 2012:
Vol. 337 no. 6092 pp. 334-336
DOI: 10.1126/science.1220656

Rapid Variability of Seawater Chemistry Over the Past 130 Million Years

Ulrich G. Wortmann ,Adina Paytan

Abstract

Fluid inclusion data suggest that the composition of major elements in seawater changes slowly over geological time scales. This view contrasts with high-resolution isotope data that imply more rapid fluctuations of seawater chemistry. We used a non–steady-state box model of the global sulfur cycle to show that the global δ34S record can be explained by variable marine sulfate concentrations triggered by basin-scale evaporite precipitation and dissolution. The record is characterized by long phases of stasis, punctuated by short intervals of rapid change. Sulfate concentrations affect several important biological processes, including carbonate mineralogy, microbially mediated organic matter remineralization, sedimentary phosphorous regeneration, nitrogen fixation, and sulfate aerosol formation. These changes are likely to affect ocean productivity, the global carbon cycle, and climate.

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51 thoughts on “Ocean seawater chemistry linked with periods of global cooling, sharp changes from greenhouse to icehouse climate

  1. No! No! No! This cannot possibly be so!!!! It’s all about CO2 and the Coal Trains of Death!! Oh, THE HU-MANN-ITY

  2. Am I reading this right? Could this help explain that nagging temperature rise preceding CO2 rise by ~800 year problem that the “CO2 is the world’s thermostat” crowd seem to have such trouble explaining?

  3. Could solar/cosmic rays changing clouds affect precipitation which increases/decreases sulfate runoff?

  4. Interesting. It is well understood in Earth Sciences that geological epochs appear to be linked to climatic changes. Most geologists suspect that plate tectonics and the movement of the continents play are a very large role in climate, whether these are down to changes in Ocean circulation and/or other factors is still not fully understood. The nice thing is that if you look back 100’s of millions of years it is pretty clear that CO2 is not even a minor factor. Changes in atmospheric CO2 are most likely an indicator or flag that something else has changed in the overall system. It is impossible for any rational person who has an understanding of geology to attribute any meaningful role to CO2 as an actual driver.

  5. An interesting post. But is it the sulfate or the calcium. Perhaps higher calcium sulfate concentrations permits much more of the earths gaseous CO2 to be dissolved into the ocean as calcium bi-carbonate (in the cold regions) or precipitated out as limestone in the warm regions.

  6. NickB. says:
    July 21, 2012 at 11:42 am

    Am I reading this right? Could this help explain that nagging temperature rise preceding CO2 rise by ~800 year problem that the “CO2 is the world’s thermostat” crowd seem to have such trouble explaining?

    I don’t see how, while the abstract talks about recent events, it means recent in a geologist’s sense. 800 years is merely an instant, if that.

    “When India and Eurasia collided, it caused dissolution of ancient salt deposits which resulted in drastic changes in seawater chemistry,” Paytan continues. “This may have led to the demise of the Eocene epoch – the warmest period of the modern-day Cenozoic era – and the transition from a greenhouse to icehouse climate, culminating in the beginning of the rapid expansion of the Antarctic ice sheet.”

    The Eocene is 37 – 56 million years ago. There’s a lot of 800 year instants in that period.

  7. The correlation between the Indian plate collision with Asia & the subsequent downward trend in global temps has long been known by geologists but this is the first time I have heard this sulfate hypothesis proposed. Previously, the correlation was generally attributed to changes in upper atmosphere circulation, driven by the lifting of the mountains, both in Asia and in North America (Rocky Mtns uplift at roughly the same time).

    I can see the potential validity in this hypothesis, although I wouldn’t say that it rules out the old hypothesis either. In reality, it could be a combination of both effects.

    For non-geoscientists out there, the images of the Zagros foldbelt attached with the post , show compressional anticlines, which where formed by the collision of the Indian plate with Asia. The significance of this, which isn’t explicitly stated in the article, is that these folds are cored by evaporite minerals, such as gypsum, anhydrite & halite. The collision process forms the folds & lifts these evaporite rocks to the surface, where prior to that,they would have been buried deep in the subsurface. Evaporite minerals are easily dissolved in water, so once at the surface, they can be rapidly dissolved / eroded & carried into the ocean by rainwater / streams / rivers, thus potentially dramatically changing ocean chemistry in a short period of time, such as the article suggests. The Zagros belt is extremely extensive , so this isn’t an unreasonable hypothesis.

    I hope this explanation helps tie the images to what the author’s are thing to propose for non-geoscientists.

    This article further strengthens the ties of geologic & climatologic processes together. Geoscientists are well aware of these ties & understand the huge variability of climate of geologic time, all driven by non-anthropogenic processes, thus why you will find the vast majority of geoscientists (myself included) falling into the skeptic camp when it comes to the subject of CAGW.

  8. Hmmmm. But what about the periodicity of various cycles, such as the 1500-year periodicity seen over the past 6,000 years? Is this overlain on top?

  9. @ “cooling trend of the past 45 million years” ????

    Too curious? Or, towards new thinking with the jellyfish?
    Given the limited attention paid to the anthropogenic component in the process between ocean and atmosphere, the magazine Nature surprised at least me, when it recently presented a study titled: “Jellyfish help mix the world’s oceans. Marine creatures could stir up seas as much as do winds and tides.” [*]
    • ” Small sea creatures such as jellyfish may contribute to ocean mixing by pulling water along as they swim, according to a new study. The collective movement of animals could generate stirring of the same order as winds and tides, the authors suggest.”
    • “Some scientists are skeptical that the process plays an essential role in the mixing of the oceans. However, should further evidence confirm this, it should be based on modeling effects that include the sea water mixing to simulate the past and future climate.”
    • “If swimming animals do affect ocean mixing substantially, climate modellers will face “a forbidding challenge”, says physical oceanographer Carl Wunsch…”

    It seems not too difficult to imagine that world shipping has a much more pronounced effect, and during war time the anthropogenic impact on the marine environment would literally explode.
    More at: http://www.seaclimate.com/a/a3.html

    (*)Kwok, Roberta (2009); “Jellyfish help mix the world’s oceans”, Nature, online 29 July doi:10.1038/news.2009.745; http://www.nature.com/news/2009/090729/full/news.2009.745.htm

  10. Maybe this type of article gives some possibility for the career of “climate scientist” may have some future. I am sure once they give up on the CO2 story, there actually may be some chance for these guys to study NATURAL CLIMATE LOL

  11. Seems to be one of those things that hides in plain sight. Geologists should enjoy this – another example of “catastrophism” and the implications for review of old and development of new science.

    Very interesting, though it seems not to tighten the wobbly wheels on the catastrophic global warming wagon. “. . . short intervals of rapid change.” in a geologic sense isn’t necessarily short in a human’s timeframe and ‘short’ is the essence of CAGW.

  12. Alex says:
    July 21, 2012 at 1:03 pm

    > Hmmmm. But what about the periodicity of various cycles, such as the 1500-year periodicity seen over the past 6,000 years? Is this overlain on top?

    The Eocene ended about 37,000,000 years ago. Even 6,000 years ago, the Eocene had been over for about 37,000,000 years. While 6,000 years is longer than 800 years, it’s still just a moment ago to geologists that work outside the Holocene.

  13. .Is this new? I studied the geochemical consequences of India colliding with Asia in the 70’s, in a geochemistry class. In what I have read of this paper they fail to mention that the Himalayan orogeny (Mountain building) disrupted atmospheric circulation in a significant way. The Himalayas produced and continues to produce a great deal of orographic precipitation. The Himalayas are still growing as the Indian continent pushes further into the Eurasians continent.
    They also failed to mention that a large amount of limestone became exposed to weathering and dissolution. It is well known that when limestone is dissolved in water CO2 is removed from the atmosphere.
    The Himalayas continue to remove a lot of water and CO2 from the atmosphere, and also modify atmospheric circulation. It appears that their grant was for the study of sulfates therefore it is the most significant parameter “One potential cause.” They also seem to be making an oblique case for the importance sulfate aerosols.
    I wonder if in their framework, if it is the kind of framework I am thinking of, they included atmospheric circulation changes due to mountain building and destruction. It would have been educational if they had mentioned some of the other parameters in their framework
    When I read through abstracts and news releases like this, I get the feeling that some of the Earth Sciences have become disconnected from others and have agendas.

  14. You know what I don’t like about WUWT? It’s too sciency. It’s the weekend! How about some pandas, or a puppy video? I mean, you’ve already won. No scientist who isn’t paid to believe in AGW believes in AGW.

    I’m an engineer. I have to think in terms of science all week long. When it’s the weekend, show us some puppies, Anthony! Or a cat and a rabbit hugging. Something like that. No more forcing me to muddle through a chart or a graph. Save that for M-F.

    Thanks in advance. ;)

  15. How did the authors exclude other possible factors, co-incidently happening at the same time, especially the position of South America relative to Antarctica and North America?

  16. “We propose that times of high sulfate concentrations in ocean water correlate with global cooling” Gypsum solubility increase to 40 deg C. It is also effected by carbonate (marine invertebrates), chloride and pressure. I wonder if these factors have all been considered ?

  17. Salinity sanity … only in Canada eh? :-) Sorry, must brag. But we do appear to have a somewhat saner government than most Western Nations. In a purported letter from 2002, publicized by his political enemies – including the socialist CBC – he supposedly states:

    We’re gearing up for the biggest struggle our party has faced since you entrusted me with the leadership. I’m talking about the “battle of Kyoto” — our campaign to block the job-killing, economy-destroying Kyoto Accord.
    It would take more than one letter to explain what’s wrong with Kyoto, but here are a few facts about this so-called “Accord”:
    ◦It’s based on tentative and contradictory scientific evidence about climate trends.
    ◦ It focuses on carbon dioxide, which is essential to life, rather than upon pollutants.
    ◦ Canada is the only country in the world required to make significant cuts in emissions. Third World countries are exempt, the Europeans get credit for shutting down inefficient Soviet-era industries, and no country in the Western hemisphere except Canada is signing.
    ◦ Implementing Kyoto will cripple the oil and gas industry, which is essential to the economies of Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia.
    ◦As the effects trickle through other industries, workers and consumers everywhere in Canada will lose. THERE ARE NO CANADIAN WINNERS UNDER THE KYOTO ACCORD.
    ◦The only winners will be countries such as Russia, India, and China, from which Canada will have to buy “emissions credits.” Kyoto is essentially a socialist scheme to suck money out of wealth-producing nations.
    ◦On top of all this, Kyoto will not even reduce greenhouse gases. By encouraging transfer of industrial production to Third World countries where emissions standards are more relaxed, it will almost certainly increase emissions on a global scale

    I don’t remember seeing this letter at the time (I was a member), but it’s great if true.

  18. I am not so sure. But it bears following up. Glad to see some original thinking in climate science for a change.

  19. This must have affected oceanic PH a lot. Which way? And what effect did it have on marine life, corals, etc.?

  20. Jeff L says: July 21, 2012 at 1:03 pm
    Thanks Jeff. As a non-scientist I appreciate your explanation.

    Jay Davis

  21. This is an interesting idea that bears further investigation. However, I remain highly skeptical of statements like “We used a… model… to show that the… record can be explained,,,.”.

    Models are easily tweaked to hindcast historical data, (which gives them the appearance of validity), but if they can’t accurately predict future trends, they’re garbage. The ‘acid test’ for any model is how well it predicts or matches reality.

  22. The big white spot at the bottom of this actual picture is Antarctica. The big brown spot above and to the right is Australia.

    At 33.7 million years ago, Antarctica looked more like Australia’s surface in the southern hemisphere’s summer when this picture was taken. .

    By 33.5 million years ago, it was already as white as the current picture.

    If you calculate the change in the Earth’s overall Albedo caused by this change, which took less than 100,000, it is enough to drop the Earth’s temperature by 2.0C (which is exactly what happened). The Antarctic Circumpolar Current was initiated at this time which isolated Antarctica in an extreme polar climate which lead to a complete glaciation of the continent.

    If you want to go back through the Eocene, one will find that similar kinds of changes in Albedo lead to slow cooling (and then warming) and then cooling and then warming again.

  23. Hmm. Lets see how it stands up to the big numbers test. Gypsum dihydrate and anhydrite have a solubility in distilled water of 2g/litre (sulphate part~1.5g/litre (fairly low). Seawater (todays) contains about 8gs/litre already of sulphate ions (equivalent to about 11gs/l of gypsum). The main sulphate minerals that one gets from seawater are Ca sulphate (anhydrite) and magnesium sulphate and the latter is the most abundant (~3 times [lazy to calculate]). Seawater also contains 3.5% total salts with about 85% being common salt.

    I’m somewhat sceptical of how rapid “gysum” is going to dissolve in this water. However, let’s say it could be dissolved rapidly relative to geological time scales (that isn’t what they are saying, though). Let’s see how much gypsum can be dissolved in a volume of distilled water equal to the sea’s volume at 2.1gs/l: ~ 10^16 tonnes of gypsum. Known gypsum reserves are about 100B tonnes. The larger view: global gypsum resources have been estimated at ‘several trillion tonnes. Let’s say 10 trillion: 10^13 tonnes; maybe they are ten times this much say 10^14 tonnes. Now lets say we dissolved it all: we would raise the ocean content of gypsum by 0.02g/l (1% of the 2.1g/l) so the gypsum content of the ocean would go up from ~ 11g/litre to 11.02g/l. The sulphate aerosols would similarly go up by about 0.2%. Probably the gypsum deposits that are possible to have been available for dissolution during the collision would be only a few percent of what I calculated, i.e. no change at all. I trust my calcs are not outrageously off.

  24. Jeff L says:
    July 21, 2012 at 1:03 pm

    I hope this explanation helps tie the images to what the author’s are thing to propose for non-geoscientists.

    A wonderful explanation. I suspected that was the case, but was unsure. Thanks for your clearly written post.

  25. Oops, I think it should be about 2g/l sulphate ions, not 8gs in natural seawater (3gs/l “gypsum). Dissolution would result ~ an increse of 1% in aerosols if all the global gypsum was dissolved. Since the available gypsum for dissolution during this event is only a few percent. There STILL is no significant change – Big Numbers are pretty forgiving.

  26. Gary Pearse
    July 21, 2012 at 4:01 pm
    ###

    I think that the mechanism being suggested involves rain water and not sea water. Of course the Press Release and Abstract are pretty useless, like always. Regardless, I am still skeptical. The Himalayan orogeny (plus that little incident of Eurasia being rear ended by Africa, closing off the Tethys, etc). probably had more of an impact on climate.

  27. Reply to ArndB

    So if its not butterflies flapping their wings causing hurricanes then it is jellyfish swimming causing tidal waves. Well, we have air and sea covered. As for land how about earthworms causing earthquakes?

    I have not read the entire thread yet so apologies if i am not the first to make this obvious joke.

    Eugene WR Gallun

  28. Jeff L says
    The significance of this, which isn’t explicitly stated in the article, is that these folds are cored by evaporite minerals, such as gypsum, anhydrite & halite.
    ———–
    thanks for explaining that. I was wondering what they meant exactly by dissolution.

    This seems to relate to the hypothesis that the ice ages are induced by mountain building, erosion, calcium injection into the oceans and subsequent CO2 draw down leading to reduced green house effect and hence cooling.

    The contradiction might be evidence of no change in sea water concentration of CO2.
    And likely mountain building episodes prior to the ice ages.

  29. @ Eugene WR Gallun July 21, 2012 at 7:09 pm

    The jelly fish thesis in the Nature article is not as stupid as you seem to suggest. The dumbness of the article (*) is to consider it as a possibility, not able to see that shipping, and other ocean uses (e.g. fishing, offshore wind farms) have a many fold higher potential as the jelly fish community with regard to ‘water mixing’. Oceans make climate! Discussed here: http://www.seaclimate.com/.
    (*)Kwok, Roberta (2009); “Jellyfish help mix the world’s oceans”, Nature, online 29 July doi:10.1038/news.2009.745; http://www.nature.com/news/2009/090729/full/news.2009.745.htm
    Regards AB

  30. Ocean chemical composition has, it is assumed, been the same for the past 500Ma. Halite and gypsum is continuously falling out of solution in every warm sea and ocean. The Red Sea has some 900m of this mix at the bottom (identified by seismic surveys) . Rainwater dissolves various chemicals, including halite and gypsum, during it travels through bedrock and route to the sea. It does not taste but chemically identified in samples using a spectrograph. So perhaps this research includes much speculation and modelling.

  31. So as the globe cools, more water is locked up as ice, and sea level drops, leaving gypsum deposits high and dry. If something causes the globe to warm, sea level rises inundating the gypsum which desolves into the ocean leading to global cooling. Neat little negative feedback just as you would expect.

  32. So some major chemical change to the ocean caused a major change in climate. It was a geological change, so it was glacially slow.

    But if we change atmospheric composition rather rapidly, it won’t be a problem?

    I’m not sure how you get any comfort from this article.

  33. Interesting, but I’m not yet convinced – we already have an explanation for the cooling of Antarctica: The opening of the Drake Passage.

  34. Yesterday I had an epitome. I was readung an artical explaining how the gulf stream has slowed to a crawl or maybe even stopped, due to the hgh content of fresh water in the ocean. Then it hit me, the common sense approach. In the ocean the thinnest crust on the world to the magma area is there. If the plannet is destabilizing due to our magnetic field getting so weak (I think it has past the point where we are now seeing the effects of it) this is where we would have eruptions from volcanos first. These eruptions would heat up the ocean and in turn produce more aerosols in our atmosphere. Because our atmosphere has shrunk so much due to the effects from a weaker sun, it in turn inhances the process. The trigger to the next ice age is here. One big volcano or a number of regular eruptions and we are on the path to brrrrrrrrrrrr. On the map it showed warmer than normal water in the artic area beneath and around greenland where they have recently found a great many underwater volcanos. Wow, common sense approach, look at the ocean temperatures. It is obvious what is happenning. This article ties it all together!

  35. Jeff L says:
    July 21, 2012 at 1:03 pm
    The correlation between the Indian plate collision with Asia & the subsequent downward trend in global temps has long been known by geologists but this is the first time I have heard this sulfate hypothesis proposed. Previously, the correlation was generally attributed to changes in upper atmosphere circulation, driven by the lifting of the mountains, both in Asia and in North America (Rocky Mtns uplift at roughly the same time).

    I can see the potential validity in this hypothesis, although I wouldn’t say that it rules out the old hypothesis either. In reality, it could be a combination of both effects.

    For non-geoscientists out there, the images of the Zagros foldbelt attached with the post , show compressional anticlines, which where formed by the collision of the Indian plate with Asia. The significance of this, which isn’t explicitly stated in the article, is that these folds are cored by evaporite minerals, such as gypsum, anhydrite & halite. The collision process forms the folds & lifts these evaporite rocks to the surface, where prior to that,they would have been buried deep in the subsurface. Evaporite minerals are easily dissolved in water, so once at the surface, they can be rapidly dissolved / eroded & carried into the ocean by rainwater / streams / rivers, thus potentially dramatically changing ocean chemistry in a short period of time, such as the article suggests. The Zagros belt is extremely extensive , so this isn’t an unreasonable hypothesis.

    Thanks for the helpful clarification.

    Has anyone done the maths to check if the Indian collision would mobilise enough Ca sulfate to significantly change the composition of the WHOLE ocean? There is a lot of seawater on the globe.

    One factor not to ignore is biology. A lot of species took the “India Ferry”, meaning that they evolved over the period starting when India was connected to Antarctica, then broke away and headed equatorward over 100 MYr or so. When India hit Eurasia, they got off the ferry and substantially changed species makeup of Eurasia, both among plants and animals. I’m just speculating, but trees and tree grazing do have an influence on climate.

  36. frank says:
    July 22, 2012 at 2:58 pm

    Yesterday I had an epitome.

    No you didn’t.

    And as to jellyfish and butterflies? Small potatoes.

  37. Tectonic plates move in centimeters per year. Using an average of 5 cm/yr, a plate might move 1500 miles in 50mm years. Some theories blame such drift for blocking the ocean water conveyor currents circulating cold/warm waters north and south. Also, such movement has been theorized to have changed wind patterns due to mountain range movements. Mountain ranges, of course, rise and fall over such periods as well moving due to plate movement. Any of these could also affect climate.

    Sulfates, tectonic plate movements, solar cycles, earth orbital changes, earth axis variations, precession, volcanism, other geologic occurances, oceanic changes, cosmic impacts and potential cosmic ray interactions are all evidently of little importance to climate compared to the trace gas CO2.

  38. clipe says:
    July 22, 2012 at 9:05 pm
    frank says:
    July 22, 2012 at 2:58 pm

    Yesterday I had an epitome.

    Were you trying to have an epiphany? Or maybe just an appendectomy?

  39. While fascinating in an academic sense the paper discusses geological processes in the distant past.Oceanographers are seeing a rapid, by geological standards, decrease in oceanic pH now.
    What geological processes might be driving this?

  40. Entropic man says:
    July 23, 2012 at 1:05 pm

    While fascinating in an academic sense the paper discusses geological processes in the distant past. Oceanographers are seeing a rapid, by geological standards, decrease in oceanic pH now.
    What geological processes might be driving this?
    ___________________________________________
    POLITICS!

    The CAGW scam is losing steam so the ocean “Acidification” scam is entering stage left as the next scare as we have been expecting for the last couple of years.

    “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.” ~ H.L. Mencken (1880-1956)

    The reason it is a complete hoax is explained HERE and a video of a simple experiment is HERE (Page down three times to get to the video)

    This hoax is really a lot easier to kill than CAGW. It was tried during the same time frame as the “Ice Age Scare” in the 1970’s and they are hoping us old folks forgot…. We haven’t.

  41. Entropic man says:
    July 23, 2012 at 1:56 pm

    This does not sound like a geological process.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-18938002

    ________________________________
    The BBC is a known propaganda rag.

    In the words of Sir Michael Lyons, BBC Chairman

    … the BBC is also part of the creative industries, one of the big success stories of the British economy. It’s a sector that holds the potential to contribute significantly to the economic reshaping of UK that the Government is seeking to drive forward

    Here is the top 100 investments of the BBC Pension

    Note that BP and Royal Dutch Shell, listed near the top, were original funders of the Climate Research Unit of East Anglia. A VP of Royal Dutch Shell, Ged Davis was active in the IPCC and the UN. ….within the Royal Dutch/Shell Group since 1972, Ged Davis is now Shell’s Head of Scenario Processes and Applications. In this capacity Davis recently headed the World Business Council for Sustainable Development’s (WBCSD) Scenario Project team responsible for producing work on sustainable development from the international business community’s perspective. and until March 2007 [Davis was] Managing Director of the World Economic Forum, responsible for global research, scenario projects, and the design of the annual Forum meeting at Davos, Switzerland.

    International businesses, the World Bank, the UN, the EU and the World Trade Organization all want to see Global Governance implemented. That is an international bureaucracy they control and we The Great Unwashed do not. CAGW and the environment are the means to that end. Once you understand that bit of politics everything else is easy.

    The key reason for all these scare scenarios is explained by Pascal Lamy, Director General of the World Trade Organization

    …governance needs to provide leadership, the incarnation of vision, of political energy, of drive. It also needs to provide legitimacy, which is essential to ensure ownership over decisions which lead to change — ownership to prevent the built-in bias towards resistance to modifying the status quo.

    They plan to get that legitimacy, that buy in by the public by scaring us, hence CAGW and ocean acidification.

    Dr Evans also goes in-depth on the politics of CAGW and the Regulating Class

    (Please check out the links, they will give you a good deal of background info)

  42. That does it! The oceans must be chemically isolated from the atmosphere forthwith. The best way to do this is to cover them all with an oil sheen. Undersea vents and offshore oil deposits must be blown open, and their contents allowed to spread everywhere. A new agency, GOO (Grease Our Oceans) must be set up and lavishly funded.

    Hurry!

  43. Brian H,

    That was Jimmy Carter’s solution to the evaporation problem at the Aswan dam. You could look it up!

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