The Sinkhole – Our Descent into the Next Ice Age

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

Back in May, Climate scientist Ed Hawkins published a scary spiral graph which appeared to show global warming leaping out at you. As a homage to Hawkins’ effort, I created a similar graph, covering the last 10,000 years, rather than just covering temperatures since 1850. The effect of the longer timescale is quite different to the Hawkins original.

The Sinkhole - Our Descent into the Next Ice Age.

The Sinkhole – Our Descent into the Next Ice Age.

The source data is ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/paleo/icecore/greenland/summit/gisp2/isotopes/gisp2_temp_accum_alley2000.txt

The spiral graph is obviously more art than science, but it presents some interesting features. The radius of the circle is related to the temperature anomaly – warmer temperatures have a larger radius. The factors are obviously chosen for artistic impact – just as Hawkins’ factors were.

On a 10,000 year timescale the spiral graph does emphasise how cold modern temperatures are, compared to the rest of the Holocene – at least with regard to temperatures on the Greenland Ice Sheet.

Unfortunately the graph ends well before 2016 – the most recent row of the data series on which the graph is based corresponds to the early 1900s. Nevertheless, it would take a really radical warming event to match some of the natural temperature excursions which appear on the graph.

I considered consulting with Dr. Mann, to request his assistance with splicing unrelated temperature series, to plot more recent values, but Dr. Mann is probably busy with all his lawsuits.

The source code for the software which produced the graph is available here. Feel free to play with it and produce your own variations. A possible improvement might be to name the various temperature excursions (warm and cold periods). Let me know if you find any serious mistakes. The code was developed using Apple Xcode.

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106 thoughts on “The Sinkhole – Our Descent into the Next Ice Age

    • If this is the same as the other well used Greenland information that should be 1855. Even if it IS 1921 that is nearly a century ago. Surely it must be possible to bring this information up to date? It does no one any good to rely on antiquated data, as that can be misleading

      tonyb

      • Data is never “antiquated.” The past is the past, and unless you are into constantly torturing data, “old” data is as good as new data. If you mean that the data doesn’t come close enough to the present, say so. You say something like, “is there a way this can be presented that includes current data?” As you can tell by the comment in the article, the data set ends where the data set ends, and he chose not to “splice” a different data source to it to make it seem like it was continuous.

      • Proxy data tend to be definitionally antiquated.

        1950 is the standard “present” largely due its suitability for radiocarbon dating. However, there has to be a standard “present.” Otherwise, it would change every year.

        There is at least one Greenland ice core proxy series that is calibrated in calendar years and extends up to 1993…

        Kobashi, T., K. Kawamura, J.P. Severinghaus, J.-M. Barnola,
        T. Nakaegawa, B.M. Vinther, S.J. Johnsen, and J.E. Box. 2011.
        High variability of Greenland surface temperature over the
        past 4000 years estimated from trapped air in an ice core.
        Geophys. Res. Lett., 38, L21501, doi:10.1029/2011GL049444.

        Kobashi is not well-liked by the Warmistas because it doesn’t demonstrate anomalous modern warming. If recall correctly, the temperatures from 1951-1993 are based on actual thermometer data.

      • Wait a minute. Didn’t Eric explain that he tried to get Michael Mann’s help in splicing disparate data sets together to bring it up to date? I’m almost sure I read that…

  1. Didn’t Mann say the 1990s decade was the warmest decade of the Holocene? I swear I remember that.

    • You wouldn’t know whether it was or not from Eric’s chart, since his data stops before all the warming of the 20th century and especially post 1950. Also, it refers to a single location in the northern hemisphere, not the globe. Hawkins’s chart covered global temperatures (land and sea surface) and went right up to 2015.

      • One thing I noticed about the Hawkins’s graph was if you took the point where he started from and went back in time at the same rate, there would be a snowball earth scenario.

  2. Using the GISP2 temperature is misleading to the extent that it’s harder to relate the information to the temperatures we experience. Converting it to a modern baseline would improve the graph.

      • DRW54 humbly asks for clarification:

        In what way was the initial (Hawkins’s) chart misleading?

        The visualisation shows x * anomaly as x² * area, and the zero point is arbitrarily chosen. Scaling an anomaly with whatever multiplier is already prone to be misleading. You remember the global warming on Kelvin scale, don’t you?

        Data visualization is something that can bring up a point or another, or even hide one, rather than just state a fact.

      • It seems I can hardly type ‘lt /b gt’ in ‘x dT as x² dT‘. You’ll get my point if you got past the first year pre-doc studies.

      • Sparks

        “It was misleading because it’s a ‘spiral’ graph… Duh!!”
        _____________

        Is the shape of the graph really more important than its content actually showing the data that it claims to show?

        Eric’s graph claims to “emphasise how cold modern temperatures are, compared to the rest of the Holocene”. In fact it doesn’t show “modern temperatures” at all. It shows nothing after 1855. Nor does it show global temperatures, as Hawkins’s chart did.

        Fair enough if you don’t like the shape of the graph, but if you’re making a comparison to longer time scales, then at least compare like for like in terms of the period covered and global spread.

      • Is the shape of the graph really more important than its content actually showing the data that it claims to show?

        It is equally important because reshaping a graph (or generally, reshaping data visualisation) allows completely complementary appearances. You conveniently didn’t comment on the global warming on Kelvin scale idea.

      • Hugs

        We’ll have to disagree over the question of whether the shape of a chart is more or less important than its showing the data it purports to show.

        “You conveniently didn’t comment on the global warming on Kelvin scale idea.”
        ___________

        The reason temperature data is presented on a Celsius or Fahrenheit scale is because it conveniently depicts a scale with which we are all familiar. Celsius is widely used because, for example, water freezes at about 0 °C and boils at about 100 °C. This is more convenient and easier to visualise than saying water freezes at about 273.15 °K and boils at about 373.15 °K, would you not agree?

        Yes, if you put temperature change on a K scale you will minimise the visual impact of the changes we have seen; but you will also deprive the data of any sense of proportion. For example, if you use K rather than C to measure human body temperature, then a change from 310.15 to 315.15 °K doesn’t look like a big deal; in reality it means probable death for patient. Hence the use of C in this case. Ditto the use of C when presenting global temperature data.

      • DWR54, cherry picking is always misleading. Any discussion of trend needs to clarify the limitations of the trend and data selected, or the presentation is inherently misleading. Hawkins spiral was simply an “oh wow! Look at this!” graphic. Also, you want to consider how inherently informative any given cherry picked trend might be. No discussion of climate that is limited to a period of a few decades or a century is likely to be more informative about climate trends than one that looks at longer millennial or multi-millennial scales. Eric’s parody demonstrates this.

  3. yes, but if you continued yours beyond 1921, it would reverse itself and start spiralling out?

    which is kind of the whole point: that we have halted the trend towards the next ice age with human derived warming…

    • Only if you pretend that there weren’t significant warm periods like the Climate Optimum, and the Roman and Medieval warm periods, and additionally pretend that things like UHI, station-drop-out, and records-tampering haven’t biased the temperature records towards extra warming.

      • Very well said Bruce. I have been looking into long-term monthly precipitation & temperature data published in hard copy up to about 1980 to 1985. I never try to go past 1985 after looking at what modern data looks like when I overlap it with the published data in hard copy.
        If NOAA, NASA, etc. Had been publishing selected long-term data sets in hard copy we would have a good historical database to use. Sadly, the data kept in digital form are readily modified, changed, etc. to support the political philosophy that there has been significant global warming, and that it was cooler in the past than it actually was.

    • Fascinating.
      Are you actually claiming that during the entire Holocene, there has never been a period of a few decades or even a few centuries when temperatures rose, despite the long term cooling trend?
      If not, then how can you be so positive that the extremely mild, extremely short current warming is not caused by the same thing that caused the previous warming episodes?

    • There is no evidence of any such halting of stadial and interstadial swings. The current stadial period is no different from previous ones. And past rise in CO2 did not halt a return to glacial advance, so you are speculating on no evidence whatsoever.

      • Not so fast Pamela. So far CO2 has not halted a return to glacial conditions, but there is evidence that may ameliorate such a descent:

        “In this work ice-core CO2 time evolution in the period going from 20 to 60 kyr BP [15] has been qualitatively compared to our temperature cycles, according to the class they belong to. It can be observed in Fig. 6 that class A cycles are completely unrelated to changes in CO2 concentration. We have observed some correlation between B and C cycles and CO2 concentration, but of the opposite sign to the one expected: maxima in atmospheric CO2 concentration tend to correspond to the middle part or the end the cooling period. The role of CO2 in the oscillation phenomena seems to be more related to extend the duration of the cooling phase than to trigger warming. This could explain why cycles no coincident in time with maxima of CO2 (A cycles) rapidly decay back to the cold state.”

        http://einstein.iec.cat/jellebot/documents/articles/Phis.Lett.A_2007.pdf

      • Direct link to the paper please, or at least give me an et. al so I can search for it. Your link says little ol’ me is forbidden to read such things, let alone comprehend them. Which is an inane bit of piffle whenever I see that warning, ubiquitous in group climate catastrophe circles.

        However, from your quote I don’t see a connection to your contention that human sourced CO2 may ameliorate the descent. Any references back to previous cycles cannot be used to make that conjecture. Nearly all descents to an interstadial glacial trough demonstrate longer time scales (looks like a series of step-functions to me) than the single function rise to a warm stadial.

        This link suggests that rising CO2 supports further deglaciation at the stadial peak but that the start of a rise to a warm period to deglaciation is an orbital/internal teleconnection.
        http://lgge.osug.fr/IMG/fparrenin/articles/barker-science2011.pdf

        This link demonstrates the stair stepped falling function and single function rise of previous cycles.
        http://epic.awi.de/16356/1/Fis2007b.pdf

        So far, it seems to me that CO2 rides the coattails and is quite a weak player in this drama.

    • The earth has been progressively cooling for 8,000 years since the Holocene Optimum, with rapid warming for the Minoan, Roman and Middle Age warmings. Today’s mild thaw up out of the coolest era of the past 8,000 the Little Ice Age is welcome. Sun Cycles 24-26 bring a new grand minimum.

    • Griff: “which is kind of the whole point: that we have halted the trend towards the next ice age with human derived warming…”

      I so wish that were true. It would mean we had some small control and could keep the warmth going just a little bit longer, which would be better for everybody – all life.

      • A.D.: It may not necessarily be true, but in the world of multiple working hypotheses it makes for a very intriguing twist:

        “The possible explanation as to why we are still in an interglacial relates to the early anthropogenic hypothesis of Ruddiman (2003, 2005). According to that hypothesis, the anomalous increase of CO2 and CH4 concentrations in the atmosphere as observed in mid- to late Holocene ice-cores results from anthropogenic deforestation and rice irrigation, which started in the early Neolithic at 8000 and 5000 yr BP, respectively. Ruddiman proposes that these early human greenhouse gas emissions prevented the inception of an overdue glacial that otherwise would have already started.”

        conclude Muller and Pross (2007)
        https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Ulrich_Mueller7/publication/222561971_Lesson_from_the_past_present_insolation_minimum_holds_potential_for_glacial_inception/links/0c96051e593f3a593d000000.pdf

        “We will illustrate our case with reference to a debate currently taking place in the circle of Quaternary climate scientists. The climate history of the past few million years is characterised by repeated transitions between `cold’ (glacial) and `warm’ (interglacial) climates. The first modern men were hunting mammoth during the last glacial era. This era culminated around 20,000 years ago [3] and then declined rapidly. By 9,000 years ago climate was close to the modern one. The current interglacial, called the Holocene, should now be coming to an end, when compared to previous interglacials, yet clearly it is not. The debate is about when to expect the next glacial inception, setting aside human activities, which may well have perturbed natural cycles.”

        Crucifix, M. and J. Rougier, 2009, “On the use of simple dynamical systems for climate predictions: A Bayesian prediction of the next glacial inception”, Published in Eur. Phys. J. Spec. Topics, 174, 11-31 (2009)
        http://arxiv.org/pdf/0906.3625.pdf

        “Recent research has focused on MIS 11 as a possible analog for the present interglacial [e.g., Loutre and Berger, 2003; EPICA community members, 2004] because both occur during times of low eccentricity. The LR04 age model establishes that MIS 11 spans two precession cycles, with 18O values below 3.6 o/oo for 20 kyr, from 398-418 ka. In comparison, stages 9 and 5 remained below 3.6 o/oo for 13 and 12 kyr, respectively, and the Holocene interglacial has lasted 11 kyr so far. In the LR04 age model, the average LSR of 29 sites is the same from 398-418 ka as from 250-650 ka; consequently, stage 11 is unlikely to be artificially stretched. However, the June 21 insolation minimum at 65N during MIS 11 is only 489 W/m2, much less pronounced than the present minimum of 474 W/m2. In addition, current insolation values are not predicted to return to the high values of late MIS 11 for another 65 kyr. We propose that this effectively precludes a ‘double precession-cycle’ interglacial [e.g., Raymo, 1997] in the Holocene without human influence.”

        http://large.stanford.edu/publications/coal/references/docs/Lisiecki_Raymo_2005_Pal.pdf

      • William, you bring links to papers that stand on the thinnest of ice and that use less than up to date reconstructions due to their publication date.

        A better paper is the following which if you can slog through it, demonstrates how much we don’t know about the past 800,000 years of ups and downs. Except for this: Our current knowledge about CO2 and its forcing capacity cannot explain the highs and lows of the past 800,000 years. Therefore researchers must examine a number of very complex interacting components, none of which reliably duplicate themselves from one reconstructed peak or trough to the next.

        http://epic.awi.de/19079/1/Khl2008d.pdf

        So in summary, I contend that you William are cherry picking papers to support some kind of CO2 connection but if you were to dig deeper you would find the conclusions of your selections not noteworthy.

    • If, in fact, we have prevented the next glaciation, that is a very, very good thing. It will save the lives of BILLIONS of people. I think it is very premature to assume such a thing from the tiny, beneficial warming we have seen so far. Especially since the warming started more than two hundred years ago and very likely has nothing to do with human activity. But if you believe in CAGW then you already believe what you want to believe without regard for the evidence so it is up to you whether or not you choose to seriously examine all perspectives on the matter. I assumed man made global warming was real until I decided to educate myself in order to better make the case for action. I discovered that the evidence was slim to misrepresented and became a non-believer.

    • In other words, man has saved life on earth from freezing to death by reversing the falling temps thereby stopping the next world wide ice age. I would say that’s a good thing.

      • “I would say that’s a good thing.”

        But you aren’t a misanthropic anti-capitalist “Liberal”, are you?

    • “that we have halted the trend towards the next ice age with human derived warming…”

      THANK GOODNESS FOR HUMAN CO2 !!!

      Doh ! Which foot have you got in your gob at the moment, Griff?

    • “which is kind of the whole point: that we have halted the trend towards the next ice age with human derived warming…”

      Utter rubbish.

    • Griff, you wouldn’t be able to see the warming, even if it weren’t simply due to a case confirmation-bias-driven data “adjustment.” The Holocene has an over-all cooling trend that simply is ignored in discussions of AGW. We might be around as warm as the Medieval Warm Period, but the Roman, Minoan and Early Holocene warm periods were all warmer and, in fact, each succeeding period was cooler than the predecessor. Mean sea level during the Early Holocene Warm Period was about 1.5 meters higher (estimates range from 0.5 to > 2 meters) based on global observations (e.g. Texas, Brazil, Tasmania, Micronesia, …).

  4. Hey, Dr Worrall, can you do one for US rural MMTS no airports?
    The best data, you know.
    Thanks.

    • Ed Hawkins:

      Associate Professor in the Department of Meteorology, University of Reading. Principal Research Fellow in NCAS & NERC Advanced Research Fellow. Contributing Author to both IPCC AR5 WG1 & WG2.

      http://www.met.reading.ac.uk/~ed/home/index.php

      “Not” a scientist, according to ‘Harold’. I wonder how Eric Worrall’s scientific CV stands up against Ed’s?

      • Excellent! I was wondering when you would make the parody (previously paradigm) shift to authoritarian mode.

      • Yeah, I think it is not wrong to call him a scientist. Not necessarily very bright and honest one, but at least he is eager in showing what he is.

        You know, when he is a scientist he ought to know the difference between x and x².

  5. If this were Mad magazine, this section would be called ‘idiot versus idiot’ rather than ‘spy v spy’.

    Science is more interesting than the childish game of ‘your mother wears combat boots. Let the games begin.

    • It’s called mockery, and their lack of science is the very thing that it mocks. Requires a sense of humor though.

      • Using that type of a spiral chart is misleading in that the temperature scale is not consistent with respect to time, creating the appearance of of an acceleration that really isn’t there.

        If you had a video of a car (or bike if you prefer) driving down the road and accelerating from 10 mph to 11 mph over a distance of 300 feet you wouldn’t really see a difference. But If you had 20,000 frames (about 1000 frames per second) and you removed progressively more frames as the video progressed (say one frame from the first two second; then two frames in the next two seconds, then 4 frames from the 5th/6th second; then 16 frames from the 7th/8th second … and so on to remove 256 frames from the last two seconds of the video) it would appear that your bicycle was accelerating faster than it really was. Right?

        Its not a perfect analogy … Hawkins didn’t remove frames, he just made the equivalent of the abscissa (x-axis) in his graph vary (get longer) with respect to time in order to make it look like it was getting hotter faster (than reality).

        If he did it by mistake he is a putz, if he did it on purpose he is not a scientist.

      • DonM: “If he did it by mistake he is a putz, if he did it on purpose he is not a scientist.”

        My guess is both.

    • Now that more women are in the military maybe in twenty years that will not be odious but merely an observed fact.

      • A caption I just saw

        “More women fly F16’s in Israel than drive cars in Saudi Arabia”

  6. Well, since the system is incompletely and actually insufficiently characterized, and unwieldy, and therefore chaotic, the prophecy of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming could come true, or a semi-stable, hospitable condition may persist to an unknown, unpredictable future time.

  7. Great graph. The following video presentation makes the same point.

    The cult of CAGW have been able to keep their gig going as the planet did warm in the last 165 years. The cult of CAGW repeat ad infinitum that the planet is now the warmest in ‘recorded’ history. ‘Recorded’ history in terms of planetary temperature data is the last 165 years.

    There is a reason why the cult of CAGW does not present and will not discuss the paleo planetary temperature for the last 10,000 years, the last 800,000 years, and the last 100 million years vs atmospheric CO2 levels.

    Observations do not support CAGW. Observations do not even support lukewarm AGW.

    There are multiple observational paradoxes for the greenhouse gas theory when the entire temperature record vs atmospheric CO2 level is analyzed. There are periods of millions of years when atmospheric CO2 is high and the planet is cold and vice versa. That observational fact indicates there are multiple fundamental errors in the basic calculation planetary temperature Vs atmospheric greenhouse gas level calculation.

    The end of the era of CAGW is near. There has been the largest increase in sea ice in the Antarctic in recorded.

    There is now the start of cooling and changes in climate in the Northern hemisphere moving to a Little Ice age climate.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/us-grains-wheat-harvest-idUSKCN10F1FR

    Poor French wheat yields to dent EU crop as rain hampers harvest

    The smallest French wheat harvest in at least a decade is set to push European Union production down sharply from last year’s record, while persistent rain is also raising the risk of lower quality in some major wheat belts, analysts and traders said.

    In late spring, torrential rain, unusually low sunshine levels and widespread plant disease hampered growth of wheat grains and led to low readings for specific weights, a measure of the milling quality of wheat, analysts say.

    In Germany, winter wheat yields could fall 10 to 20 percent from last year, although rain delays meant only one third of the crop had been gathered so far, the Association of German Farmers said on Wednesday.
    “The repeated harvest interruptions means that such a small area has been gathered that no serious estimates can be made of the national yield,” an association spokeswoman said.

    As in Germany, rain was raising concerns about quality downgrades to wheat crops in Poland.

    This is what to expect in terms of ‘climate change’.

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

    Little Ice Age
    The Little Ice Age (LIA) was a period of cooling that occurred after the Medieval Warm Period (Medieval Climate Optimum).[1] While it was not a true ice age, the term was introduced into the scientific literature by François E. Matthes in 1939.[2] It has been conventionally defined as a period extending from the 16th to the 19th centuries,[3][4][5]….

    Europe/North America
    The Norse colonies in Greenland starved and vanished (by the early 15th century), as crops failed and livestock …. …. Hubert Lamb said that in many years, “snowfall was much heavier … ….Crop practices throughout Europe had to be altered to adapt to the shortened, less reliable growing season, and there were many years of dearth and famine (such as the Great Famine of 1315–1317, although this may have been before the LIA proper).[25] According to Elizabeth Ewan and Janay Nugent, “Famines in France 1693–94, Norway 1695–96 and Sweden 1696–97 claimed roughly 10% of the population of each country. In Estonia and Finland in 1696–97, losses have been estimated at a fifth and a third of the national populations, respectively.”[26] Viticulture disappeared from some northern regions. Violent storms caused serious flooding and loss of life. Some of these resulted in permanent loss of large areas of land from the Danish, German and Dutch coasts.[24]

    Historian Wolfgang Behringer has linked intensive witch-hunting episodes in Europe to agricultural failures during the Little Ice Age.[36]

    Antarctic
    Kreutz et al. (1997) compared results from studies of West Antarctic ice cores with the Greenland Ice Sheet Project Two (GISP2) and suggested a synchronous global Little Ice Age.[46] An ocean sediment core from the eastern Bransfield Basin in the Antarctic Peninsula shows centennial events that the authors link to the Little Ice Age and Medieval Warm Period.[47] The authors note “other unexplained climatic events comparable in duration and amplitude to the LIA and MWP events also appear.”

    https://wattsupwiththat.files.wordpress.com/2012/09/davis-and-taylor-wuwt-submission.pdf

    Davis and Taylor: “Does the current global warming signal reflect a natural cycle”

    …We found 342 natural warming events (NWEs) corresponding to this definition, distributed over the past 250,000 years …. …. The 342 NWEs contained in the Vostok ice core record are divided into low-rate warming events (LRWEs; < 0.74oC/century) and high rate warming events (HRWEs; ≥ 0.74oC /century) (Figure). … …. "Recent Antarctic Peninsula warming relative to Holocene climate and ice – shelf history" and authored by Robert Mulvaney and colleagues of the British Antarctic Survey ( Nature , 2012, doi:10.1038/nature11391),reports two recent natural warming cycles, one around 1500 AD and another around 400 AD, measured from isotope (deuterium) concentrations in ice cores bored adjacent to recent breaks in the ice shelf in northeast Antarctica. ….

  8. This is the link to the short video which illustrates scientific issues and the propaganda issues. The cult of CAGW try to limit the climate vs CO2 debate to the last 165 years. The data for the last 10,000 years shows the planet warms and cools cyclically. The recent warming is hence not unusual and will be followed by cooling, if the past is a guide to future.

      • Easy, the blade is on the left, the handle on the right.
        Dr Mann got it backwards, sort of what you would expect if you use upside down data proxies..

    • William Astley

      The blue lined chart in the clip shows the GISP2 data from Greenland on an absolute scale. So the range is between -28 to -35 degrees Celsius. Also, it ends in the year 1855.

      The green lined chart shows global surface temperature *anomalies* from 1970. The range is between -0.4 and 1.0 degrees Celsius.

      Surely it goes without saying that putting these two utterly different data series together on the same scale isn’t a particularly instructive thing to do.

  9. Glaciation (ice ages) are precipitated by major decreases in TOA insolation in the northern hemisphere (65N) during summer. Currently we are over four-fifths of the way through a smaller cycle of decreasing insolation. Within a couple thousand years, NH insolation will begin to rise again. Although decreasing insolation over the last ~9 kyr likely contributed to decreasing temperature through the Holocene, overall it will not decrease sufficiently in this cycle to precipitate new glaciation. A new ice age is not now underway.

      • Behave yourself, temperatures around the planet in the 1920’s and 1930’s were far warmer than today’s, even around the solar system. That Gistemp anomaly is mostly derived from adjustments and ghost stations that do not exist.

    • Oh, I think it is. Glaciations start very slowly. We’re already a few thousand years past interglacial optimum and the temperatures are slowly trending down. A few more solar minimums and we’ll have the Regressives screaming how capitalism is going to freeze us all to death.

  10. The data are from central Greenland, on top of an ice sheet, and start at 0.0951409 (thousands) of years ‘before present’, where present is conventionally defined as 1950.

    0.0951409 x 1000 = ~95 years. 1950 – 95 = ~1855.

    So Eric’s data is location-specific and ends in 1855, not 1921, right?

    How does this compare to Hawkins’s chart of global temperatures from 1850 to 2015?

  11. That graph shows us that the Northern Hemisphere is doomed. To show us that the Southern Hemisphere is doomed we need the graph to go clockwise.

  12. According to ice core data, ice ages started quite rapidly, we still live in interglacial period with relatively little rise of temperature in last decades.

    • Dropping on millennial scale (since holocene maximum) and centennial scale / many decadal scale (1930’s hot period) but it has been rising from the 1970’s cold period back toward normal… at least until 1998 when it peaked and started a slow rounding over to a new drop.

      One interesting thing in the long term data: The temperature cycles seem to have a periodic “pop and drop” where a warm spike leads to a cold plunge. When in a warming run, expect a hard and fast reversal.

  13. Pleistocene climate is a weakly forced nonlinear oscillator. Owing to the chaotic nature of the flipping between glacial and interglacial attractors, under the influence of weak Milankovich forcing, magic numbers such as NH insolation at 65N are not a strict threshold (“code”) for anything, more like a guideline:

    Holocene inception began about 20 kyrs ago with slow ocean driven Antarctic warming, long before any NH cooling started. Judging by SSTs around Antarctica over the last year or two, it could just be ending where it began. A feature of glacial-interglacial transitions is interhemispheric bipolar seesawing. Global SSTs also indicate that this is underway.

  14. “On a 10,000 year timescale the spiral graph does emphasise how cold modern temperatures are, compared to the rest of the Holocene – at least with regard to temperatures on the Greenland Ice Sheet.”

    But who knows what that means for the rest of the planet?

    • “But who knows what that means for the rest of the planet?”
      Exactly.
      And to boot 1921 (when above graph ends) was before modern warming took hold.

      • It takes somewhere between 60 and 100 years for the snowfall to change to ice through compaction. So the air in the most recent ice was from a snowfall 60-100 years prior. The age of the air is correlated to the age of known chemical such as CFCs. I think it’s appropriate that this graphic ends with the end of the ice core data. Splicing other data would contaminate the presentation. Mann created the hockey stick by splicing dissimilar data.

  15. I would not put too much hope in higher Co2 concentrations helping prevent a new ice age. The paleoclimatic record demonstrates that higher Co2 concentration ALWAYS resulted in colder temperatures and a new ice age.

    Think about it – the data demonstrates Co2 cannot and does not prevent the initiation of ice ages.

    Ralph

    • That’s because the atmospheric CO2 came from the Earth’s natural carbon cycle. To-wit the sinks and sources aren’t out of whack and the sources diminish in tune with the sinks (ocean) as the extremely slow descent of lowering temps proceeds.
      Anthro pumped CO2 will only diminish if humans allow it.

      • Nonsense. You obviously have no idea about energy needed versus energy available in the anthropogenic portion of natural CO2 to sustain warmth beyond the natural up and down of glacial periods. Even climate catastrophics know that the change in CO2 was not enough to explain the change in global temperatures from the ceiling to the floor over the past 800,000 years. The small portion of natural CO2 that is human fossil fuel sourced does not have the cajones to sustain an interstadial beyond the other teleconnected forcings that seek to end it..

  16. Here is my question. Why are we talking about the “Next Ice Age”, when we are currently in the middle of our current ice age? Its called the Pleistocene, and we have been in it for the last two and a half million years. That’s right, we are already in an ice age. What I’m talking about here is Intellectual Laziness from the author, and most others in the field.

    We are in what is accurately called an “inter-glacial”, which is the Holocene. And we are at the very tail end of it, with the drop into the “Next Glaciation” just around the corner. But it is NOT the next ice age.

    Come on folks, let’s use proper English and learn to identify things correctly. This is akin to the Big Lie about Liberalism being Left Wing. That’s right, it’s a lie, and these leftists are really Progressives,……not Liberals.

    What’s wrong with our misuse of facts? We should all be ashamed of ourselves. And if you wish to argue this, you are more than welcome to correct the error of my ways, at my forum: http://ai-jane.org/index.php

  17. Bottom line, these things are hair splitting exercises vis a vis how close we are to the end of the interglacial. It’ not a matter of if but when (unless one is taking the anti-scientific view that the system is prone to run away and that some mythical hidden land-mine-like inflection point capable of completely overturning the millions years long Quaternary set up … yah, right!).

    • that some mythical hidden land-mine-like inflection point capable of completely overturning the millions years long Quaternary set up lurks …

  18. In no work quoted in previous studies one can find the DATE for start of the
    inception…. A Crucifix/Rougier paper (further up the blog) of 2009 is quoted,
    in http://arxiv.org/pdf/0906.3625.pdf, in
    which they chatter about “prediction of the inception”, but they only provide, quote
    the abstract: “”provisional results indicate peak glacial conditions in 60,000 years””…
    Those simulators do not even know the DIFFERENCE is between PEAK and
    INCEPTION…. really bad…..the title does not match the content…..
    On the other hand, we at http://www.knowledgeminer.eu/climate-papers.html,
    analyzed each single temp spike since 8500 BC…the paper series part 1-5 reached
    1 AD, and part 6 and 7 will cover 1 AD to 2210 AD, the paper part 8 will cover
    1640 AD UNTIL GLACIAL INCEPTION, which we define as the date, when global
    temps will never exceed those of the LIA in the 17th century.
    The papers will be ready until the years´s end. JS.

    • hmmm. Interesting. Given the jagged appearance of the goose-step march down towards a stadial period, it makes sense to define its inception (establishment). My questions are what triggers the beginning of the jagged slide down and do those triggers commence before the last warm decade is over. Are there signals in our current observations that tell us we are running out of net discharged heat (we are warmed by it) and need to switch to net recharge heat (we are left out in the cold by it)?

    • Interesting. Yes, inception’s synonym is “establishment”. The establishment of a stadial period would need some kind of crossing mark of no return due to the jagged decent into colder periods between interstadials. Reconstructions are quite bouncy on the down slope.

      My interest is in the switch to the down slope from a stadial at the top. And in particular, what might be the signals IN THE WARM peak itself that would tell us we are closer rather than farther from the edge of the down slope. A change in percentage of cloud cover? Clear skies allowing more heat to be absorbed by the oceans than evaporated, thus leaving us cooler on land? A change in the thermocline showing a diminution of heat in the top ocean layer (and what if it IS only the top layer and not the deep ocean that is important)? A change in the winds? We can still be warm while these things slowly or suddenly change simply due to the inertia of the system.

      Would it not be surprising, let alone ironic, that the very things climate catastrophe believers warn us about, receding polar caps and warmer sea surface, are the very things that could tell us, and did to who/whatever came before us, that THAT is the warning signal of an impending edge to the downward slope.

      • … what might be the signals IN THE WARM peak itself that would tell us we are closer rather than farther from the edge of the down slope?

        According to Tzedakis a reactivated bipolar seesaw might be such a signal.

      • Pamela, interesting your comment…we take the LIA temps as the highest temps for a
        “point of no return” back to interglacial warmth, and define this temp level as beginning
        of the new glacial……this is where “inception” begins, as I see it…..this will be described
        in the paper Climate Pattern Recognition, part 8. However, from the top of the Holocene
        warmth in the past, in the Late Holocene, an “initiation period of temps decline trend” can
        be pinpointed. This initiation period of declining temps lies within the RWP, the declining trend
        from there on is -0.4°C per millenium …..this is explained in detail in the paper Clim. Patt. Rec.,
        part 6, which carries us from 1 AD over to 1150 AD. this paper will be available within the
        next weeks at the usual address http://www.knowledgeminer.eu/climate-papers.html ….
        .The following paper, part 7, ready as well, will take us to AD 2110, and the glacial inception
        paper, part 8, various millenia beyond.
        Consult this part 6 paper in which your questions are answered in detail. Cheers JS.

      • J.Seifert, wriggle matching is observation of non-parametized variables. Such pure forms of wriggle matching (which yours is not) is only the first step in exploratory science. That is your first mistake. Your second mistake is that you create papers out of over-parametized wriggle matching when you should be working on plausible mechanisms of direct correlations before writing your thesis.

        Know this: Well-done mechanized results don’t require pages and pages. In fact, the length of your papers may correlate better with the implausibility of your paradigm more than anything else.

        To correct your mistakes, start with non-parametized data series to see if correlation exists. Then before you jump to external plausible mechanisms, you must burn the midnight oil to unqualify internal mechanisms. Not an easy task. The journals are filled with INTERNAL teleconnected variables that cause this and that, even looping back to cause the cause. You must disprove within those paradigms (IE you can’t even consider your own yet) and THEN show that they cannot equal your paradigm. If its 50/50, your paradigm loses.

        In summary, your papers are useless towards, and even degrade the discussion, the scientific discovery of internal versus external causes.

    • The problem is that weather (and climate) are analog processes without neat boundaries. Geological periods are geological concepts and have fixed boundaries assigned by geologists, ideally based on evidence, but even so, you run into disagreements. For instance the end of a glacial period – does it end the year after the glacial maximum, or when the climate has warmed to some specific – but arbitrary – point? Similarly, when does an interstadial end? I have a handy guide to Sierran Geology by Dr. Mary Hill that places the end of the LIA at 1900, about 50 years later than some other geologists. Again, relatively recently the beginning of the Holocene continues to be argued: http://www.stratigraphy.org/gssp/holocene.pdf. The authors point out that the beginning of the Holocene is associated with the end of the Younger Dryas rather than the end of the glacial maximum which varies from continent to continent. They place the start at 11,700 b2K (before AD 2000).

  19. Hey, if it weren’t for Yidiots stirring up trouble, life could actually get pretty boring here on Earth, what with the lack of trends towards catastrophe and all. It would be more fun, though, if these Yidiots would, say, sponsor a BBQ or something instead.

    • Oh, and I had a “Spirograph” when I was young. It got boring, too, after a short while. But I did learn about gears.

  20. Eric, that is a excellent. Now, if only someone, using Geocarb III data, would do one showing the downward spiral in atmospheric carbon over the Phanerozoic. In million-year steps you would need about 650 steps.

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