The issue of vulcanism and cool are of interest to readers of this blog and to me. Cooling and vulcanism seem to go together, but it is not clear what the real connection is. I suspect that a quiet sun can create conditions for eruptions. Not sure the mechanism. As Willis point out most cooling comes before the eruptions.

Watts Up With That?

Guest Post by Willis Eschenbach

Richard Muller and the good folks over at the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature (BEST) project have released their temperature analysis back to 1750, and are making their usual unsupportable claims. I don’t mean his risible statements that the temperature changes are due to CO2 because the curves look alike—that joke has been widely discussed and discounted, even by anthropogenic global warming (AGW) supporters. Heck, even Michael Mann jumped on him for that one, saying

It seems, in the end–quite sadly–that this is all really about Richard Muller’s self-aggrandizement 😦

And if anyone should know about “self-aggrandizement”, it’s Michael Mann … but I’m not talking about Muller’s claim that humans caused the warming. No, I mean the following statement:

The historic temperature pattern we observe has abrupt dips that match the emissions of known explosive volcanic eruptions; the particulates from such events reflect sunlight and cool the…

View original post 535 more words


Early Snow in Alaska – Yes I know it’s Summer, but does Mother Nature?

Average snowfall in July for Talkeetna is… 0. Average snowfall in August is less than .05″.

Today – Scattered snow showers before 1pm, then rain showers likely. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 34. South wind around 10 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60%. Little or no snow accumulation expected.

Tonight – Rain showers likely before 7pm, then snow. Low around 25. South wind around 10 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%. New snow accumulation of 1 to 2 inches possible.

Monday – Snow. High near 27. South wind around 5 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%. New snow accumulation of 2 to 4 inches possible.

Monday Night – Snow showers likely, mainly before 1am. Cloudy, with a low around 22. South wind around 5 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60%.

Tuesday – A 40 percent chance of snow showers. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 29. South wind around 5 mph.

Tuesday Night A slight chance of snow showers after 1am. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 24.

Wednesday – A 30 percent chance of snow showers, mainly after 7am. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 28.

Wednesday Night – A chance of snow showers.Mostly cloudy, with a low around 23.

Thursday – A chance of snow. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 26.

Thursday Night – A chance of snow. Cloudy, with a low around 22

Friday – A chance of snow showers. Cloudy, with a high near 24.

Friday Night-  A chance of snow showers. Cloudy, with a low around 24.

Saturday – A chance of snow showers. Cloudy, with a high near 24.

H/T to Ice Age Now

Little Ice Age began with a bang

Russ Steele

I have alway had this nagging suspicion that when sun spots are lowest the volcanic activity is higher,  but have not found the data to confirm my suspicions.This paper reported on in Science News may prompt me to redouble my effort.

Frozen moss suggests climate cooling kicked off fast, possibly with help from volcanoes

The Little Ice Age, a centuries-long spell of cold summers in Europe and elsewhere, began suddenly late in the 13th century, a new study finds. A string of volcanic explosions may have set off this change in climate by belching particles that reflected sunlight and allowed Arctic sea ice to reach epic proportions, researchers report online January 31 inGeophysical Research Letters.

“We’ve been able to identify the beginning of the Little Ice Age, something that’s been very difficult to do in the past,” says Gifford Miller, a paleoclimatologist and geologist at the University of Colorado Boulder. “This cooling wasn’t gradual; it was an abrupt shift.”

It’s long been known that much of the globe became chillier during the Renaissance. By the 17th century, temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere had fallen by half a degree Celsius compared with medieval times. Ice skating on London’s frozen River Thames became popular.

To pin down when this climate change began, Miller’s team traveled to Baffin Island on the northern fringes of Canada. Small glaciers in this region tend to respond quickly to temperature changes. Carbon dating of moss entombed in Baffin’s ice revealed two sudden advances of the snow line that killed off the vegetation: a sudden cold spell between 1275 to 1300, followed by intensifying cold between 1430 and 1455.

Testing whether this chill extended beyond Canada took the researchers to the Langjökull glacier, the second largest ice cap in Iceland. Layered sediments from a nearby lake appeared progressively thicker in the 14th century — exactly what would be expected if the glacier expanded and ground away the landscape.

These chillier conditions began during an especially active time for volcanoes. “The second half of the 13th century had the most volcanism of any period of the past 1,500 years,” says Alan Robock, an atmospheric scientist at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, N.J.

Miller and his colleagues may not have noticed, is that both cooling periods occurred in sync with low sunspot activity. Those two periods of low sunspot activity are known respectively as the Wolf Minimum and the Sporer Minimum.

This is interesting in light of the poll of Gen-Xer’s showing they are rejecting Global Warming hoax.

Watts Up With That?

I noticed with my morning coffee that Tom Nelson had a Google Trends graph that piqued my interest, so I decided to expand upon it a bit before getting back to work. After looking at my results, the title of this post could just as easily be “off the radar”. Have a look:

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Alice Springs, On the Cusp?

Russ Steele

In September 2003, Ellen and I visited Australia and one of the more memorable areas we visited was Alice Springs.  We arrived by air the day after a rain storm, the first one in 14 years according the driver that drove us from the Airport. As we walked about the town in the heat, you could almost see the evaporation taking place as the huge puddles vanished into the clear sky.

When ever we read stories about Alice Springs we recall our visit to the transportation museum, the historic telegraph station, the spring that is not really a spring but a rocky ledge in an under ground river, the flying doctors and the school of the air, to name a few.  Life is hard in Alice Springs and a recent extended cold spell is not improve things.

Ice Age Now has some details:

“Burst water pipes all over town are keeping local plumbers busy as a new cold weather record is set in Alice Springs (Australia),” says this article by Emma Sleath.

By Saturday (when we hit a chilly -5.2 degrees), Alice Springs had endured five nights in a row of minimum temperatures below -4, a new record in the region.

Warren Thompson, who owns a plumbing company in town, says he’s been run off his feet.

“I was getting calls from about 8am [on Saturday morning] with people ringing up saying that they had no water coming out of their taps…then by about 9.30am everything started to thaw out and then all of the burst pipes appeared,” says Warren. “We just weren’t able to cope with the amount of calls that I was getting.”

More on the event from Ice Age Now HERE.   Thanks to Ray Baney who writes from Australia:

“I’ve been living here off and on since 1978, and we appear to be going full circle back to the colder times of the 1970’s.”

“Overnight temps have been dipping below freezing almost every night for weeks …. We haven’t done that in many years.”

The Southern Hemisphere is having a rough winter. It is weather now, but if the trend keeps up, it could be come climate change.

Cold Winter and Summer Have Some Ready to Leave Alaska

Russ Steele

Ellen and I are fans of Flying Wild Alaska and the adventures of the Tweto family on the Discovery Channel.   Jim Tweto and his family-run airline Era Alaska and each week we get another episode on how they battle the arctic elements to transport supplies and passengers to some of the most inaccessible areas on the planet, winter and summer. Link to Flying Wild Alaska web page is HERE.

This season includes numerous references to the some of the worst winter flying they have ever encountered, with lots of visuals to back up the claim.  The article below reminded me of a conversation between Jim Tweto and his youngest daughter Ariel about the declining population of the remote villages in a recent program.  Jim Tweto concluded that the increased isolation was the issue, the weather was making travel more difficult and earning or harvesting a living was becoming more of a challenge, thus people were leaving the villages for warmer places.  It appears everyone is questioning life in Alaska.

ANCHORAGE – After a record-breaking winter, we are now headed for one of the coldest months of July on record.  And it has some Alaskans thinking it may be time to leave the great land.

By Alaska summer standards, it’s been a pretty cool and gloomy start to the beginning of July.

The temps may be setting records, but it’s not the first summer that’s been less than sunny – and some people say they’ve had enough.

Link to the KTVA article is HERE

According to the US Geological Survey (USGS) survey the glaciers in Alaska are growing again. As the summers cool, and the winter ice does not melt, the glaciers will continue to grow, like they did in the 1800s. Could this be a signal that we are on the cusp of an ice age?

New paper finds Medieval Warming Period was ~1°C warmer than current temperatures

Russ Steele

A few year ago my wife and I traveled to Orkney  Scotland to observe the Bronze and Iron Age archeological sites on the island. We as many sites we came across archeological digs underway by researchers.  Here is an example of one that we missed:

A paper published today in Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology finds that the Medieval Warming Period “was warmer than the late 20th century by ~1°C.”

Marine climatic seasonality during early medieval times (10th to 12th centuries) based on isotopic records in Viking Age shells from Orkney, Scotland


Seasonal sea-surface temperature (SST) variability during the Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA), which corresponds to the height of Viking exploration (800–1200 AD), was estimated using oxygen isotope ratios (δ18O) obtained from high-resolution samples micromilled from archaeological shells of the European limpet,Patella vulgata. Our findings illustrate the advantage of targeting SST archives from fast-growing, short-lived molluscs that capture summer and winter seasons simultaneously. Shells from the 10th to 12th centuries (early MCA) were collected from well-stratified horizons, which accumulated in Viking shell and fish middens at Quoygrew on Westray in the archipelago of Orkney, Scotland. Their ages were constrained based on artifacts and radiocarbon dating of bone, charred cereal grain, and the shells used in this study. We used measured δ18OWATER values taken from nearby Rack Wick Bay (average 0.31 ± 0.17‰ VSMOW, n = 11) to estimate SST from δ18OSHELL values. The standard deviation of δ18OWATER values resulted in an error in SST estimates of ± 0.7 °C. The coldest winter months recorded in the shells averaged 6.0 ± 0.6 °C and the warmest summer months averaged 14.1 ± 0.7 °C. Winter and summer SST during the late 20th century (1961–1990) was 7.77 ± 0.40 °C and 12.42 ± 0.41 °C, respectively. Thus, during the 10th to 12th centuries winters were colder and summers were warmer by ~ 2 °C and seasonality was higher relative to the late 20th century. Without the benefit of seasonal resolution, SST averaged from shell time series would be weighted toward the fast-growing summer season, resulting in the conclusion that the early MCA was warmer than the late 20th century by ~ 1 °C. This conclusion is broadly true for the summer season, but not true for the winter season. Higher seasonality and cooler winters during early medieval times may result from a weakened North Atlantic Oscillation index.

Please note last two sentences. It is clear that the PDO and he AMO have a broad cyclical influence on our climate. I am working on another post on these two factors in our coming climate change.

H/T to the No Tricks Zone for this link.