Weather Ripples and Climate Tides

Letter to the Editor

Every time a north wind blows hot air over Adelaide, some Chicken Little cries “Global Warming”. And when an El Nino predictably causes a hot year like 1998 or 2015/16, some sensation-seeking celebrity will trumpet “hottest year eevah”.

They are watching short-term weather ripples and waves and ignoring the underlying climate tide. Daily, monthly and yearly temperature records will always be equalled or broken by extreme weather – that is what weather does.

In the medium term, Earth temperature trends are influenced by variations in solar activities as evidenced by sun-spot cycles. These variations affect solar intensity, cosmic rays, clouds and Earth temperature, causing medium-term climatic events like the Little Ice Age and the Modern Warming. There are persuasive signs that recent solar activity has peaked. So we can expect cooler weather soon.


But to see what the climate is doing we must look long-term and study the glacial cycles. The Milankovitch cycles of Earth in the solar system control these.


Is it warming or cooling now?

See this very informative video by Professor Bob Carter:

There are many signs that Earth’s climate is gradually cooling (as Prof Carter shows in the video above).

For example, snow and ice is accumulating.

In the Antarctic, Mawson’s Hut and the Colbeck Hut are being progressively buried in ice. In Greenland, “The Lost Squadron”, which was forced to land on the Greenland Ice sheet in 1942, was rediscovered 50 years later buried under 268 feet of ice. Many glaciers are just a few thousand years old, and Himalayan glaciers are growing.

To read more about things getting buried in the snow and ice, see Mawson’s Hut:

Glacier Girl buried in Greenland:

Himalaya Glaciers Growing:

We live in the Holocene warm interval within the Pleistocene Ice Age – a time of recurring cycles of ice separated by brief warm interludes. Earth’s climate is driven by solar system cycles, and climate changes appear first in the Northern Hemisphere which has more land in the sensitive sub-polar regions. The GRIP ice core from Greenland shows the long-term average temperature there peaked 7,000 years ago and has trended down for at least 3,000 years.

Greenland now cooler than 8000 year ago:

Long Term Climate trends – Greenland Ice Core Project (GRIP).

See “The Inconvenient Skeptic”, 2001, ISBN 978-0-9847829-1-8 by John Kehr, Page 115.

We will still have hot days and heat waves but the climate mid-summer has passed and the temperature tide is going out. Spreading alarm about short-term temperature fluctuations of a fraction of a degree is a distraction.

No warming for 58 years:

Moreover, promoting damaging energy and land management policies designed to prevent warming just as the next climate winter approaches will be seen by future generations as bizarre.

Viv Forbes,

Rosewood    Qld   Australia

70 thoughts on “Weather Ripples and Climate Tides

  1. Glacier girl! Quick, get Her perspective on glaciers! I’m sure she knows something male glaciologists don’t!

  2. Time will surely tell, and if the world goes into a cooling spell , there will be plenty of people who said ‘I told you so’.

    • We’ve been having such sunspot-based predictions for a while. Here, is David Archibald, frequent guest author here, quoted by WUWT, in 2008:
      “That suggests that we have a year to go and that Solar Cycle 23 is likely to be 13 years long. This is 3.4 years longer than Solar Cycle 22 and thus with mid-latitude temperatures responding at the rate of 0.7 degrees C per year of solar cycle length, Solar Cycle 24 will be 2.4 degrees cooler than the one we are still in.”
      2.4°C! And we’re in the last part of that cycle.
      Or his Feb 2009 submission to the Senate (Aus):
      “2008 is the tenth anniversary of the recent peak on global temperature in 1998. The world has been cooling at 0.06 degrees per annum since then. My prediction is that this rate of cooling will accelerate to 0.2 degrees per annum following the month of solar minimum sometime in 2009.”
      That’s about 7 years now. 1.4°C down.

      • Main problem is that there are number of natural variables which are characterised by non-stationary correlation with solar activity. This does not mean that the sun is either the primary driver or it’s effects are negligible.

      • So – the science really isn’t settled.
        Those that say it is settled may be mistaken, or deliberately obtuse [because here is money in it!!].
        We know some of what affects temperature, and a bit about climate.
        We do not know it all – let alone all the feedback loops, all the correlations, and all the geographic variability.
        The weather machine is very complex.
        When factoring in time – to give approximations for climate – life gets much harder still.

  3. In the medium term, Earth temperature trends are influenced by variations in solar activities as evidenced by sun-spot cycles.

    Stated with such certainty. Could you please show some evidence of that which is not more like a 9y cycle that sometimes coincides with SSN and then drifts off?

    • Thanks Vuk’ , looks nice.
      what worries me a bit is that it goes in and out of phase with AMO. Look at 1935,1965,2005.

      • What is compared are idealised 21 year solar magnetic cycles and geomagnetic 16 year ripples represented by pure Cosines (in reality periodicity of both varies, result of which would be significant phase shifts) with actual observational data of the N. Atlantic SST.

      • The above was a possible origin for the 16.1 which you said was unknown ( since you already have that number in your SSN model it may be relevant) I’ve always thought the Hale cycle more likely than Schwabe. Does your model work further back than 1970 ?
        Also the 9.1 is quite commonly found in published lierature Scafetta showed it was of lunar origin. I suspect it is the mean frequency of two lunar tidal periods.
        2/(1/8.85+2/18.6) = 9.07
        That is exactly the peak I got from cross-correlation of ACE and SST.
        That will be like clockwork but as you say the solar variation is a lot less regular.
        Indian Ocean is the only major basin that shows 9.3 instead of 9.1 . Maybe because it is only open to the SH making it structurally different.

      • Hi Greg
        The above is an exercise to show in a simple way that both 9 and 60+ year periodicities may have a common source i.e. sun-earth interaction.
        Important point here is that the above can’t be simply extrapolated too far in the either direction; the more distant past (on this side of the Maunder minimum) might have been characterised by periodicities in the 50 years range.
        I suspect that the AMO being such a strong feature of N. A. almost disappearing further south of the equator, it may not be the TSI or the lunar tides or any other globally wide, but in this case it is a more localised driver involved. . The first one on my list of suspects is the N.A. tectonics.

      • “Does your model work further back than 1970 ?”
        There are no observational data prior to the mid 1960’s, but it might according to these guys from the US Naval Research Lab and the Max-Planck Institute (see here
        Alternatively, Dr. S. says no! but again that is one of the two possible suppositions.

    • You calculate twice the period of the sunspot cycle as 21.4 years. This is the Hale cycle, which corresponds to the change in solar magnetic polarity. It’s effect on climate may be modulated by the strength of the sunspot cycle over longer time periods. URL:
      I wonder what relationship this might have with Svensmark’s theory that cosmic ray flux affects Earth’s albedo via cloud formation?

      • Hi Mr. Colbourne
        Yes, you are correct, it is ~22 year Hale cycle . In my view HC is the true solar cycle, not the 11 year one (visually observed) . Globally and hemispherically the sun has only 22 year magnetic cycles.
        As far as climate is concerned the 11 year cycle is almost imperceptible, however, the 22 year cycle can be found in all global and hemispheric climate indices but not particularly strong, (except in the iron deposit rich areas as in this example from Australia ). The 22 cycle weakness may be due to the fact that most of its energy is gone into cross-modulation for generating 9 and 60 year cycles.
        Svensmark’s hypothesis is one of the ideas, but regretfully its validity is often disputed.

  4. I hesitated to comment at all, in the spirit of the previous thread. But:
    Glaciergirl shows central Greenland accumulation, not net Greenland ice mass balance. (Note Greenland is bowl shaped, so central ice is not dispositive. (My views on the ‘truth’ are elsewhere indelibly recorded.)
    Whether solar cycles are dispositive have been much disputed. Including (by WE amongst others) whether they are even reliable.
    So while the post is hopeful, hardly dispositive. There are hard hitting dispositive skeptical arguments to CAGW. Lets use those, in a politically swelling chorus. Scattershot ‘sciency’ observations, (no matter how true), no longer suffice in what has become a political battle.

      • dis·pos·i·tive/disˈpäzitiv/
        1. relating to or bringing about the settlement of an issue …

        Google is your friend.

    • Commenter Ratfellis said yesterday:

      Regards Glacier Girl, at Gisp2, the 1945 layer is only 22 meters down. So I imagine that Glacier Girl has sunk through extra layers, due to her weight.

    • ristvan commented: “….There are hard hitting dispositive skeptical arguments to CAGW. Lets use those, in a politically swelling chorus. Scattershot ‘sciency’ observations, (no matter how true), no longer suffice in what has become a political battle…..”
      +1 Not to diminish the value of science but to broaden the audience.

    • ristvan,
      “So while the post is hopeful, hardly dispositive. There are hard hitting dispositive skeptical arguments to CAGW. Lets use those, in a politically swelling chorus. Scattershot ‘sciency’ observations, (no matter how true), no longer suffice in what has become a political battle.”
      I see no logic at all in your thinking . . Why would people discussing something like this detract in any sense from whatever arguments against CAGW are being made by anyone? What is the causal mechanism you have in mind for this hypothetical counterproductive effect you propose?

  5. Greg, isn’t ACE and SST expected to correlate? Warmer water, more or stronger hurricanes? Boiling water in pot makes eggs hard? These are not independent variables. Are you mistaking SST for SSN?

    • In a trivial sense, yes. But it doesn’t quite work that simply. Both the current very warm hiatus and the similarly warm period from 1935 saw a distinct drop off in ACE.
      Much to the disappointment of those who want the world to go badly wrong, not everything can be reduced to a straight line trend and a simple linear causaliy.

    • The SST during the heart of tropical cyclone season is always warm enough to support every tropical wave turning into a powerful storm, but most do not. Obviously, the SST plays just a minor role in tropical cyclone formation. Atmospheric conditions are far more important for storm development and can make the SST anomaly practically irrelevant.

      • At this point in our climate science development we don’t understand what’s going on in the atmosphere. We know so much less about the oceans, which represent a heat capacity far beyond the atmosphere. It should be obvious that the oceans have their own weather systems, with huge currents, upwelling and variations of temperature and salinity that dynamically rearrange themselves around the globe on timescales well beyond annual weather variations we get excited about on the surface. The effects of this huge heat sink dwarf whatever we do.

  6. Lordy. Let’s hope this letter, with its main inyourface picture of solarcyclomania and statement that everythingcauseseverythingmechanism rides the road to the bottom of the webpage in a hurry. Embarrassing.

  7. Science implicitly acknowledges that the accuracy of forecasts are inversely proportional to the product of time and space — or perhaps just space and motion — offsets from an established reference. Science precludes offering prophecies or predictions, and indulging in [social/political] consensus. The modern penchant for overlooking the predicate axioms and scope of “scientific” theories, the desire to conflate logical domains, and other “secular” faith-based departures from the scientific domain, have been a recipe for negative progress of human achievement and understanding. All while increasing the risk to humanity and civilization in a well-intended but misaligned effort to adapt to our chaotic environment, life, etc.

  8. The youtube embed code (v=JpfMM3bVbhQ) has some extraneous garble attached to it in the post – probably why it doesn’t work.
    This should work:

  9. A farming acquaintance of my family died not so long ago – he was only 4 or 5 years older than me. I was reminded of how as kids 45 or so years ago and me being 9 or 10, we’d help with The Harvest. His father would grow spring-planted wheat and to bring it home was a hot and very dusty business – is that what killed the guy prematurely/ultimately? There was no grain drying needed or used nor any preservative, it was just piled up in a barn.
    Nowadays, myself and all my neighbours know that you’re risking a harvesting disaster to try and grow spring barley, with its 4/5 week shorter season and even then, it needs to be drenched in propanoic acid preserver.
    Maybe 20 years ago, myself and my sister took it on ourselves to replace the flat/asphalt roof on our mother’s garage during The Summer. We hadn’t much clue what we were doing and it took us over 6 weeks to do the job. Not once did we get rained on and to have done so would have been even more work as the plasterboard we exposed would have got wasted. Even then, it took a week after we finished before that roof was tested by real rain.
    It took us so long to do that roof because we were also making grass silage for overwintering our cows. We made nearly 130 acres at a rate of 10 acres per day, *if* we were doing really well,baring the frequent breakdowns and using 60 and 70hp 2WD tractors. We always made perfectly good silage and without trashing the fields with mud, wheelmarks and ruts.
    Nowadays I still make 120 acres but employ 800hp machines that do 10, 12 or 15 acres per hour. Even then, its always a race against wet weather that threatens to spoil the crop and or wrecks the land.
    In 1960, my farm was originally intended, designed and built as a dairy farm. (I now keep beef animals) It was intended that the winter housing period extended to 180 days. Dairy cows are thin skinned creatures and don’t like the cold & wet. Nowadays, the housing period is typically 210 days, even for my hairy, thick skinned fat-carrying beefies.
    Lastly but not least, my local wunderground, goes back 16 years of history, says the annual average temperature round here is 1.5 degC lower than it was 10 years ago. The 2 nearby MetOffice stations say it less by 0.8 degC
    So what gives – have I got more faeries on the head of my pin than you have on yours…

    • PS I am at 55 deg latitude and pretty well on the receiving end of the Gulf Stream/ Atlantic Conveyor – although Ireland does redirect it north a wee bit.
      *If* Trenberth’s missing heat is being buried in the ocean, why isn’t the conveyor dredging it back up and dumping it on me?

    • However, also bear in mind that permissible threshold for the presence of molds in grains has reduced, with modern diagnostics and the modern preference for not developing gangrene or psychosis.
      “The cooler climate during the LIA had a huge impact on the health of Europeans. As mentioned earlier, dearth and famine killed millions and poor nutrition decreased the stature of the Vikings in Greenland and Iceland.
      Cool, wet summers led to outbreaks of an illness called St. Anthony’s Fire. Whole villages would suffer convulsions, hallucinations, gangrenous rotting of the extremities, and even death. Grain, if stored in cool, damp conditions, may develop a fungus known as ergot blight and also may ferment just enough to produce a drug similar to LSD. (In fact, some historians claim that the Salem, Massachusetts witch hysteria was the result of ergot blight.) ”

  10. The Greenland Icecore Programme is a European research program conducting ice-core sampling. It is located 492 miles northeast of Kangerlussuaq. Here, scientists during the week succeeded in sinking a drill to Greenland’s bedrock through nearly two miles of ice. The ice core samples they removed span nearly 250,000 years of history. The information they contain will allow scientists to study climatic and atmospheric changes through time.

  11. Perhaps this chart makes Viv Forbes point about solar cycles and Arctic ice variations:
    Figure 6.5. Annual-mean Arctic-wide air temperature anomaly time series (dotted line) correlated with estimated total solar irradiance (solid line in the top panel) from the model by Hoyt and Schatten, and with the mixing ratio of atmospheric carbon dioxide (solid line in the bottom panel) From Frovlov et al. 2009

      • Yes, we all know that TSI is the “solar constant” and not the likely direct source of climate changes. Below is a more complete explanation of Frolov et al. position
        The variation of temperature matches the TSI curve far better than it matches the CO2 curve. However, the Hoyt and Schatten model for TSI is just one of many, and other models lead to very different patterns for TSI vs. year. Furthermore, climate modelers would argue that the temperature curve in the second warming epoch represents the continuation of the first warming epoch, interrupted by a period from about 1940 to about 1980 when increasing aerosol concentrations outweighed the effect of increasing greenhouse gases. Therefore, Figure 6.5 is just one representation of many that could be derived. Nevertheless, if Figure 6.5 were taken at face value, the temperature and TSI variation charts would suggest the presence of both a positive “100-year” trend and quasi 60-year cyclic oscillations.
        While Figure 6.5 is suggestive, the fact remains that we really do not know how TSI varied prior to the advent of satellite measurements around 1980. Figure 6.5 demonstrates that the form of the variability of Arctic surface temperatures during the 20th century resembles the variability of the Hoyt and Schatten model for TSI. This is suggestive that variations in TSI may have been an important factor in 20th century climate change. Though the total variance of TSI from 1880 to 2000 according to Hoyt and Schatten was 384 W/m2, the simple spreading of this flow over the spherical area of the Earth is incorrect. As we show in this work, a significant part of TSI variance influences the high-latitude regions. Furthermore, as was noted in Section 5.4, Budyko (1969) concluded by calculations that solar constant variations of several tenths of % are sufficient to induce essential climate changes.
        In seeking a relationship between solar variability and climate change, we may consider TSI and SA (Solar Activity). The connection between TSI and climate is direct; TSI represents the fundamental heat input from the Sun that drives our climate. However, although SA represents fundamental aspects of the dynamics of the Sun, its connection to the total power emitted by the Sun is not quite clear. SA includes energetic particle emission, electromagnetic emission in the UV and higher frequency ranges and magnetic fields. It is manifested in the Earth’s phenomena in the form of polar lights, magnetic storms, radio-communication blackouts, etc. A number of different indices are used to measure the level of SA, particularly sunspot indices (Wolf number, etc.), the intensity of solar wind, and various magnetic indices. Even though variations in TSI associated with changes in SA may be small, the impact on higher latitudes is significantly amplified by the interaction of charged solar wind particles with the Earth’s magnetic field. As shown in our work, evidence exists that variability of SA is connected to Arctic climate variations. Frolov et al. 2009 pp. 124

      • Pamela, there is no fence, many things are in play: From Frolov et al 2009 conclusions:
        The Earth’s climate is affected by internal and external factors. The internal factors include natural hydro-meteorological, geological, and biological processes, as well as self-oscillation phenomena related to interactions in the ocean-sea ice-atmosphere-glaciers system. In addition, anthropogenic impacts are also considered to be internal factors; they are caused by the increase in concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere because of human activity. External factors include solar activity, tidal and nutation phenomena, variability of the Earth’s rotation speed, fluctuations in the solar constant, fluxes of energy and charged particles from space, and other astronomical factors.p.133

    • Probably the decline in the solar wind strength since the mid 1990’s, that’s exactly from when negative North Atlantic Oscillation increased, and from when the AMO and Arctic warmed.

  12. It is difficult to discuss a changing climate with those who only want to talk about the weather.

    • Why? Climate trends are derived from statistical analysis of weather. There are no climate trends outside of those created by measurements of weather.

    • @ JohnWho,
      Actual climate changing (no, not the ‘climate-change’ meme that gets tossed around for political [policy promotion] argument reasons, I refer to the actual physical change itself) is detected as a trend that appears on times scales generally greater than 500 years.
      Anything shorter is the overprinting of weather cycles, sometimes in phase, sometimes out of phase, sometimes amping, some times cancelling. The result is the weather record. We don’t even know all the cycles occurring yet, and the ‘consensus’ people want to pretend they can discern climate from short term century duration weather data records?!
      It’s either positing a falsehood, or ignorance, or … or … no that about covers it.
      You don’t get a climate record until enough data exists to create a trend that can be smoothed to a similar level as the proxy climate records we have of other recent and adjacent millennia. Anything shorter that pretends to be more precise over short time scales is a-scientific nonsense.
      It takes much longer to get a meaningful change trend signal in climate. You can not get it from the met data we have to date, not to mention the outrageous date ‘adjustments’ occurring and the known inaccuracies due to sensor placement and urban bias, nor from satellites without many hundreds more years of observation records.
      And even then you’d have almost but not quite nothing, in terms of information to inform (or worry) politics or the public, with any actual scientific accuracy.
      And given all the data ‘correction’ distortion games in 500 years I’d say the traditional PROXIES will probably still be more relatively accurate and meaningful for relative change comparisons to plot an actual global climate change trend, in 2500 AD, of the preceding 1,000 years than the meddled with statistical weather record is.
      Climate trends do not appear on the time scale of real-time human scientific observations and data logging that has occurred to date (central UK record notwithstanding). People who can’t figure this out are apparently not even aware of the character of what a changing of the global climate signal amounts to.
      In the meantime, we have 150 years of weather cycles to decipher (and people conspiring to vandalizing even that much) and this ‘climate-change’ meme that contrives to equate MET and SAT data to ‘climate-change’ signal data, is nothing but a-scientific political voodoo, the smoke that gets in everyone’s eye.
      What they plot is a merely short-term smoothing of the weather date trend, pretending to record changing climate, and also effectively claiming to divine climate change moves to several decimal places in just 25 years! Absurdity of absurdity.
      It’s useless hogwash, you need 25 x 25 years of data to get a changing trend with one significant decimal.
      At shorter is the century scale cycles we see in proxies and also in MET data that SATs are now depicting also in more detail, and what’s driving those we don’t even know, so how on earth can we say a short term trend, any or them, are noteworthy, different from prior, or in anyway can be construed as anthropogenic when the MET sensors are predominantly urban, and the rural sites don’t show a similar century or decadal warming?
      i.e. it’s local warming, not global, and the satellite record agrees, or it did, less so now, they adjust that to suit the urban MET data now.
      It’s clearly appropriate to question if science even has any meaningful change of climate trend signal – at all – the past 250 years. It seems it’s merely assumed there is, like a self licking ice-cream, because of the ‘ice-cream’ meme of a clear-cut climate change trend determination being possible over short times scale than ~500 years.
      But there’s a vast pot of money available if you do successfully pretend it is possible to do that, and you can connive to can get away with it, alter data and try to suppress and beat down people who say it’s a fantasy, pseudo-science, a corruption of science and its publications, exploited ruthlessly and fanned by politics, and that the 97% consensus among scientists does not even exist, and never has.
      I’ll give you that much JohnWho.
      We are only discussing this here now, because that’s exactly what occurred, a systematic a-scientific creation of this fantasy that clear and accurate changing in a global climate signal can be measured on shorter time scales than about 500 years.
      It can’t be, it occurs on a different order of magnitude in the proxy record.
      This fact doesn’t change one iota just because you have real-time data logging of weather, and so want to lick that imaginary ice-cream to three decimal places.

  13. “Earth’s climate is driven by solar system cycles, and climate changes appear first in the Northern Hemisphere which has more land in the sensitive sub-polar regions. The GRIP ice core from Greenland shows the long-term average temperature there peaked 7,000 years ago and has trended down for at least 3,000 years.”
    The warmest spikes in GISP through the Holocene are the colder periods for the rest of the globe including the Antarctic. The very cold period on GISP ~2750-2500 BC is when city building flourished worldwide, and the very warm spike in GISP at around 1200 BC is when most of those cultures collapsed, including the Minoans who it is incorrectly named after. The Vostok proxy has the correct sign on those periods, and has the Dark Ages ~350-540 AD showing as cold rather than warm as is does on GISP.
    We are in a relatively warm period, but still at the mercy of solar cycles, which my model of shows a repeat LIA type sequence through the next 250yrs, with long multi-cycle solar minima from the 2090’s, and again from around 2200. You get 30 years of increased negative AO/NAO and persistent El Nino conditions, and large areas of continental interiors get abandoned as they are so dry, as I believe happened in the U.S. great plains during the Maunder Minimum.

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