Germany Weathers Darkest Winter in 43 Years

gloomy winter day

gloomy winter day (Photo credit: gabork)

“Overly Overcast: Germany Weathers Darkest Winter in 43 Years”

It seems that there’s a lot of gloom in Germany this Winter, more so than usual. This article in Spiegel explains why:

“The days may be getting longer, but there’s still not a hint of springtime sunshine in Germany. Weather data shows that this winter has been the gloomiest in 43 years. If the sun doesn’t start shining soon, it will be the darkest winter on record.

Winter in Germany is typically a grim affair, dark and steeped in the kind of chilly damp that goes straight to the bones — and, unhappily, to the psyche. But many residents feel that this winter has been particularly hard to bear.

Meteorologists say that’s because it has been the darkest winter in more than four decades. Less than an average of 100 hours of sunshine have been recorded so far over the course of the meteorological winter, which runs from December through February, said National Meteorological Service (DWD) spokesman Gerhard Lux on Monday. The winter average is an already measly 160 hours of sun.”

From – http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/germany-weathers-darkest-winter-in-43-years-a-885608.html

h/t to WUWT reader Michael Schaefer

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73 thoughts on “Germany Weathers Darkest Winter in 43 Years

  1. Sounds like Germany might be the first to snap. Strain on the psyche is not good, and they have already suffered badly after being so early and so eager to embrace Crazy Green.

  2. If they don’t come to their senses on this global warming nonsense, their winters are going to be a whole lot more dark and gloomy as well.

  3. kbray in california says:
    February 27, 2013 at 9:14 pm
    Global Warming causes Global Darkening…
    That must be in the model somewhere.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    I’m certain it is on the list. I’m going from memory here, but I think it is right after global warming causes colder winters, but right before global warming causes more snow.

    (There was a rumour going around that global warming would cause less snow, but it turns out this was a misunderstanding of a statement by a researcher at the CRU. What he meant was that global warming would cause global dumbing, and children would not remember from one year to the next what snow was. Or how to spel dumming. Dumming beein lots like dimming which is the prosess that starts the darkening).

  4. First there was peak oil, then peak wind, now it appears there’s peak light…

    with the “green energy” being touted by red politicians, the light at the
    end of the tunnel is in danger of being replaced by a low-wattage LED candle….

    EnBW, the major provider in Baden-Wuerttemburg is now saying that
    the bird choppers, er, windmill generators will really be taking off in 2014-2015.
    Too bad they didn’t get the report on peak wind….

    Could have saved the ratepayers a lot of money for useless ugly windmills…

  5. Th UK is notoriously cloudy being surrounded by water with weather fronts frequently sitting off its coast.

    Solar is not suitable in high northern climes (due to low incidence of sunlight particularly in the autumn to Spring period when energy demand is at its highest) and even less suitable where the country has a high rate of cloudiness.

    Why and how politicians have been suckered into building/subsidising inefficient solar arrays and windfarms in high northern latitutes beggars belief. Any schoolboy would know the inefficiencies and that they could never be an economical way forward towards so called green energy production.

  6. Richard Verney

    Every schoolboy knows that all UK politicians are biddable corrupt scumbags so of course they will buy anything, no matter how inappropriate, so long as they get something out of it for themselves.

    Actually, the issue with solar is how to store the excess energy generated in summer (you can of course have very long sunshine hour totals in summer due to day lengths being up to 20 hrs) to use in winter.

    It’s the same with wind, turning energy generated when the wind blows into a form which can be switched on when demand peaks.

    To a lesser extent, it’s the same with the tide. Turning the daily energy generated through tidal surges into a stream compatible with the demand profile.

    The only lesson we should learn is that California knows nothing about our system, as they are subtropical with a climate where it really only rains for 3 months a year and where the southern part of the state is a desert.

    Now if Washington State were developing technology, maybe they would be closer to our climate??

    More likely the Japanese to be honest…….

  7. It has been a lousy winter. Today has been forecast to be sunny for a week and it is actually once again thick heavy cloud cover. They can’t get a forecast right 12 hours in advance. The solar is a total joke in a country that doesn’t use a/c much.

  8. Here in Germany, lots of solar arrays covered in snow. Guess it just isn’t worth taking the snow off when it’s so dark. Think I’ll just go an lie down under my SAD lamp ;-)

  9. In Norway where I live we have had less precipitation and clouds, and a bit colder than “normal”, this winter soo far! All the clouds migrated to Germany? I wonder why? But its okay and you can keep them. But I wonder where the the UNFCCC’s CAGW with milder and wetter winters are? DO they only exist in the minds of “scientist” that make a living on the UNFCCC?

  10. Low sun activity = more cosmic rays = more clouds

    Why must people make climate science soooo difficult?

  11. Today in the UK I am basking in +5C temperatures whilst my son in law in Spain reports snow today. Funny old world.

  12. In sydney Australia we are having a cool and rainy feb and looks like march will be below average temp our dams are over flowing despite the global warming movment saying our dams will never be full again, when will this fraud stop as i am getting sick to the teeth of it

  13. Recently, according to the German meteorologist Dominik Jung this is going to be Germany’s 5th colder than usual winter. Jung, apparently, was sounding the Warmist alarm a few years back but now he seems to have changed his tone somewhat.

    “With the current winter, we now have 5 winters in a row that have been colder than the long-term average! Crafty scientists at first explained that climate warming was just taking a timeout. Strangely, this timeout has now been going on for 5 years without interruption. Accordingly things have gotten very quiet in the climate warming debate.”

    http://notrickszone.com/2013/02/17/meteorologist-dominik-jung-turns-skeptical-after-germany-sets-record-5-consecutive-colder-than-normal-winters/

  14. richard verney says:
    February 27, 2013 at 10:32 pm

    “Why and how politicians have been suckered into building/subsidising inefficient solar arrays and windfarms in high northern latitutes beggars belief. Any schoolboy would know the inefficiencies and that they could never be an economical way forward towards so called green energy production.”

    Yes, in Orlando Florida my solar panel heats bath water 8 months a year. The other four months the water is cold. July and August in London have about the same sunlight as December and January in Orlando. How anyone could have thought solar would be useful that far north is very hard to imagine.

  15. Theo Goodwin says:
    February 28, 2013 at 2:46 am

    richard verney says:
    February 27, 2013 at 10:32 pm

    “Why and how politicians have been suckered into building/subsidising inefficient solar arrays and windfarms in high northern latitutes beggars belief. Any schoolboy would know the inefficiencies and that they could never be an economical way forward towards so called green energy production.”

    *********************************************************************************************
    On the politician front, it is known that Britain’s Prime Minister David Cameron’s father-in-law has a large windmill installation reaping all the subsidies etc. on offer. Is this enough reason?

    Steve T

  16. Confirm this.
    This year I bought some plant lamps for my indoor plants, because they shed leaves more than usually during this season. Here in Bavaria, each day is as gloomy and gray as the day before with only a few hours of sunshine per week.
    It’s really depressing while looking out of my windows and my desire for vacation in warmer regions is growing more and more.

  17. David Schofield says:
    February 28, 2013 at 12:40 am
    “Like living inside a Tupperware box.”

    No data, just my feeling like living inside a Tupperware box also, but Cape Cod Massachusetts has had a very overcast winter this year.

  18. in the historic words of the “Hippie-Dippie Weatherman” (George Carlin): “The weather forecast for tonight will be … Dark!”

  19. I’m sure the Weather Channel’s “Hacking the Planet” will figure it all out! You know, the one featuring some girl who dropped out of her PhD program in Neuroscience, and dated Bill Maher (ICK!) and writes for the Huffington Post, some editor with a BS in Biology, and a “science comedian” who may or may not have even attended college, I can’t tell. Yes, this is what passes as scientific rigor on the “Weather” Channel. A disgrace in the most profound meaning of the word.

  20. It is obvious that some of the good folks in Germany have spent their entire lives indoors because of abundant energy and inexpensive electricity. Now with increased cost due to Green energy and electric feed in tariffs, they are switching off the lights and going outside.

    “Ya’ know, it’s kinda’ dark out here!”

  21. I am disappointed at the adverse comments on that wonderful renewable form of energy, solar power. It works 24 hours a day in all weathers and is particularly effective at night when most power is required and during gloomy winter days when a bit more heat is needed.

    Oh, sorry! I was thinking about grown up power sources like coal fired or nuclear power stations

    Tonyb

  22. Germany has 15% of its people now in energy poverty (google: germany energy poverty) they are in energy poverty because of subsidies paid to the solar power and windmill manufacturers for ‘renewable’ energy systems that don’t work. It is astounding that a country that prides itself on its engineering prowess could have fallen so easily for this confidence trick.

    UK is in an even worse state with a solid probability now that within 5 years there will be rolling blackouts as they are closing functional major power generation plants because they use coal and have put up non-functional windmills under some deluded scheme that they will replace the solid base load required. (and yes this may be due to the Prime Minister’s father in law getting $1500 a DAY in subsidies from windfarms on his land).

  23. Rhys Jaggar says:

    February 27, 2013 at 11:14 pm
    /////////////////////////
    You are right, storage is the isssue.

    In sunny climes, low grade solar thermal works acceptably well. I live in Spain and usually there is not a cloud in the sky. It is probably sunny for around 330 days a year and it is rare to have more than 3 consecutive cloudy days (does happen but rare).

    With an appropriate storage tank, solar thermal will produce all the domestic water for a small household for about 10 months of the year. In the winter months it contributes something but you need to supplement with an immersion heater. With a large household and high water usage it may not cope for about 4 months a year.

    The advantage of solar thermal is that it is cheap, systems can be had for as little as $1,000 (plus fitting), and hence the pay back time is only a few years. PVR is expensive with batteries and inverters and it is difficult to envisage that a system would ever pay for itself. Their use is best confined to remote areas which are not coupled to the grid.

  24. Waiting for the headline “Global Warming Causes Dark Winters” should be out any minute now.

    Absolutely hilarious!

  25. Eric says:
    February 27, 2013 at 8:54 pm

    I wonder how all those new solar farms are doing?
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    john robertson says:
    February 27, 2013 at 8:56 pm

    How are those solar panels putting out for you? Germany.
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    They don’t know. The guy whose job it is to clean the snow off the panels has been out sick all winter. :)

  26. Average 100 hours? That can’t be per day or per week, so is it per month or per winter?

    REPLY: per this winter. -A

  27. The Germans in the long haul are not fools. They are already redeveloping coal and making moves to recover an economy devastated by fools and economic handouts to EU wastrels. Ultimately, they will lead the fools out of the wilderness. I’m surprised its taking so long though..

  28. It is clear that global warming causes innumeracy: the inability to compute that in a country like Germany the winters are always overcast and lousy for solar power, and some more overcast than average. It is the inability of Hansen to compute that if “eventually” we burn all the fossil fuels which “eventually” causes the ice caps to melt, this is an event nearly 3000 years distant, not a crisis for today.

  29. Sunshine hours does have a major impact on people’s moods. The less there is the more gloomy they get. One of the reasons attributed to a fairly high suicide rate in the dark northern Scandinavian winters and quite likely elsewhere too.
    If the suicide rate is up in western Europe this winter it will soon be blamed on manmade climate change.

  30. This story begins with darkness in the German motherland. Will it end with climate science enlightenment for them? Maybe a German renaissance is needed first.

    Good luck to you Germany in being the leader over there.

    John

  31. Gary Pearse says:
    February 28, 2013 at 6:33 am
    “The Germans in the long haul are not fools. They are already redeveloping coal and making moves to recover an economy devastated by fools and economic handouts to EU wastrels. Ultimately, they will lead the fools out of the wilderness. I’m surprised its taking so long though..”

    I’m German. Most Germans are gullible idiots who will fall for any propaganda lie by the Greens or the Eurocrats. It is simply amazing to what extent the people around me echo the proganda theme du jour. Currently they all express their concern about the Italian election – what, the Italians didn’t elect the Goldman Sachs ex employee that has been installed for them? Well, but of course my fellow Germans would not even be able to say that sentence – they long forgot that Monti was a non elected Eurocrat and their beloved public media never told them the Goldman Sachs connection.

    They are really very stupid, very uninformed, yet think they are smart and informed. Do not trust them.

  32. ARMIDALE NSW Australia : Gloomy for whole of Febuary 3 c below the average.Tomatoes will not ripen!Ah the vicissitudes of weather!Off to Germany inMarch

  33. DirkH says:
    February 28, 2013 at 7:45 am

    “I’m German. Most Germans are gullible idiots who will fall for any propaganda lie by the Greens or the Eurocrats.”

    Perhaps a bit harsh of you, although I think this is because you expect better of your fellow Germans. Your more thoughtful type, I suspect, represents a higher proportion in Germany than is to be found in the rest of the EU. It isn’t foolish to have been fooled; it is foolish to not do anything about it when you finally know it. A recent rethinking on global warming by some of your prominent institutes (Wegener) and your minister of energy’s realization that current policy is leading to disaster, will bear common sense fruit. Other European governments (perhaps with the exception of France) will eventually follow suit.

  34. For those who are suffering from the gloomy winter in Germany and elsewhere, you might want to have a physician test your vitamin D levels. You might need a prescription vitamin D booster.

  35. I’m out for a drive here in southern Ontario Canada and snow has been falling lightly but steadily for the past three days (as it has been for most of February). All the solar panels have auto-attitude positioned to be completely horizontal, this results in them collecting a nice six or so inches of snow. These panels are about 20 feet or more off the ground, even if the skies clear the snow remains stuck to the panels and they produce no power.
    The foolishness of solar power at or above any Canadian latitude is stunning !!!

  36. Gary Pearse says:
    February 28, 2013 at 6:33 am
    . I’m surprised its taking so long though..
    *********
    As someone who worked building a few coal plants, critical path schedule takes about 2-1/2 to 3 years. That’s after design.

  37. I met an old man walking down the road the other day. He called out “when is it going to get warm, we have had 11 months winter!”.(in the UK) I didn’t like to tell him it would probably be about 40 years time.

  38. DD More says:
    February 28, 2013 at 10:56 am

    Gary Pearse says:
    February 28, 2013 at 6:33 am
    . I’m surprised its taking so long though..
    *********
    “As someone who worked building a few coal plants, critical path schedule takes about 2-1/2 to 3 years. That’s after design.”

    I’m in mine/plant development consulting and there are long lead times. My comment was intended to refer to the time it’s taking Germans to get the picture of the economic suicide they have been committing.

  39. Having read so many accounts for many years in a row of cold and snowy conditions across europe, asia (-90 in siberia), even austrailia, snow in north africa, I’m puzzled how every single month with all these cold and gloomy winters we still always have a positive temperature “anomoly”. How cold does it have to get in how many places for the “anomoly” to become negative?

  40. I’ve just seen a BBC reporter in northern Japan standing next to 6 meter (6 yard) deep snowdrifts, talking to a 70 year old man who has never seen anything close to the snow amounts of this winter, and then the reporter calmly describing this weather as a consequence of global warming.

  41. Theo Goodwin says:
    February 28, 2013 at 8:48 am
    For those who are suffering from the gloomy winter in Germany and elsewhere, you might want to have a physician test your vitamin D levels. You might need a prescription vitamin D booster.

    You’re right, most of us are probably vitamin D deficient.

  42. An Aussie through and through, I worked in Switzerland in the early 1990s. I used to cycle to/from work every day. Eventually I figured out that this was giving me SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) as I started feeling really depressed all the time. So I started to cut down on the clothing to increase my skin exposure and hence Vitamin D. But this simply meant I froze my butt off going both ways while still feeling really depressed. Eventually I just started drinking heavily in the evenings….

  43. I live in Pennsylvania and it has been dark here too. I can’t provide hours, but I can tell you that my solar electric installation has had the worst winter since installing it three years ago. One other thing we have had very little of is snow. Massachusetts got it all, the lucky devils.

  44. phlogiston says:
    February 28, 2013 at 3:29 pm

    “You’re right, most of us are probably vitamin D deficient.”

    Thanks for the response. I was not offering general advice but genuinely recommending that you ask a physician to do a test.

  45. Patrick says

    ‘Similar comments from friends and family in the UK, dark and gloomy!

    Not in the Scottish part of the UK! Lots of glorious sunshine and clear blue skies this week.

    Just a pity that Scotland has few solar PV installations, but has despoiled its own countryside with thousands of windmills. Which have not been able to provide any nett power at all because the air has been completely still.

  46. How ironic that the last (and apocalyptic) part of Wagner’s Ring Cycle is called ‘Gotterdammerung’ which translates as ‘Twilight of the Gods’.

    Maybe the Gods are showing their dislike of solar PV as the solution to Germany’s energy problem with this awful warning………

  47. “Latimer Alder says:

    February 28, 2013 at 8:08 pm”

    Yes, you are right. I was talking about Southern England. Mind you, Scotland is the country that plans to derive 100% electricity generation from alternatives by 2020 (I am not sure that vision is too clear) , and sell what it generates from fossil fuels to Engand/Europe. By the sounds of it, this “plan” isn’t working too well.

  48. Once again proof that addressing climate change by switching to an energy source dependent on weather and climate AMPLIFIES VULNERABILITY TO CLIMATE CHANGE. And this vulnerability increases in direct proportion to the percentage of energy provided by these sources. This simple conclusion should be obvious to anyone asking the question. It’s amazing that so many politicians and the media have been blind to this obvious reality. The Germans, having large installed capacity of solar are learning the meaning of energy dependency climate vulnerability.

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