The long sunspot cycle 23 predicts a significant temperature decrease in cycle 24

Russ Steele

Norway scientists Jan-Erik Solheim, Kjell Stordahl & Ole Humlum have submitted a paper showing a relationship between solar activity and earth based temperatures in Norway.


Relations between the length of a sunspot cycle and the average temperature in the same and the next cycle are calculated for a number of meteorological stations in Norway and in the North Atlantic region. No significant trend is found between the length of a cycle and the average temperature in the same cycle, but a significant negative trend is found between the length of a cycle and the temperature in the next cycle. This provides a tool to predict an average temperature decrease of at least 1.0 ◦C from solar cycle 23 to 24 for the stations and areas analyzed. We find for the Norwegian local stations investigated that 25–56% of the temperature increase the last 150 years may be attributed to the Sun. For 3 North Atlantic stations we get 63–72% solar contribution. This points to the Atlantic currents as reinforcing a solar signal.

The full paper can be downloaded HERE.  If this relationship works in Norway, it must also have a similar impact in other regions of the county, though over a variable range of temperatures.  We can expect lower temperatures as Solar Cycle 24 continues, though at a much lower level than past cycles.   The authors conclude:

Our forecast indicates an annual average temperature drop of 0.9◦C in the Northern Hemisphere during solar cycle 24. For the measuring stations south of 75N, the temperature decline is of the order 1.0-1.8◦C and may already have already started. For Svalbard a temperature decline of 3.5◦C is forecasted in solar cycle 24 for the yearly average temperature. An even higher temperature drop is forecasted in the winter months (Solheim et al., 2012).

Artic amplification due to feedbacks because of changes in snow and ice cover has increased the temperature north of 70N a factor 3 more than below 60N (Moritz et al., 2002). An Artic cooling may relate to a global cooling in the same way, resulting in a smaller global cooling, about 0.3-0.5 ◦C in SC24.

Our study has concentrated on an effect with lag once solar cycle in order to make a model for prediction. Since solar forcing on climate is present on many timescales, we do not claim that our result gives a complete picture of the Sun’s forcing on our planet’s climate.

Stay tuned!


Author: Russ Steele

Freelance writer and climate change blogger. Russ spent twenty years in the Air Force as a navigator specializing in electronics warfare and digital systems. After his service he was employed for sixteen years as concept developer for TRW, an aerospace and automotive company, and then was CEO of a non-profit Internet provider for 18 months. Russ's articles have appeared in Comstock's Business, Capitol Journal, Trailer Life, Monitoring Times, and Idaho Magazine.

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