Free Markets, Free People

Mini-Ice Age?

Probably not. But the probability that the cold weather the world is experiencing might be part of a multi-decadal oscillation (MDO) and a natural cyclical occurrence puts a real dent in the so-called “science” of man-made global warming.

I found it interesting that over the weekend, the New York Times went to great lengths to explain that what was happening wasn’t a “global” event, but instead the product of an “Arctic Oscillation” which has planted a large high pressure cell over England and has diverted the jet stream south of England opening the doors for this arctic blast. That from the paper that will take two hot days in August and blame them on AGW. Says the NYT:

In most years over the past few decades, the opposite has been true: there has been lower-than-average pressure over the Arctic, and higher-than-average pressure over the mid-latitudes — the middle of which cuts through Maine, across the Great Lakes and on to Oregon.

That pattern allows the jet stream to blow unimpeded from west to east and keeps the cold Arctic air largely north of the United States. The result tends to be warmer temperatures across much of the United States east of the Rocky Mountains.

No one is quite sure what drives these flip-flops in air pressure.

Actually that’s not true. In fact many climate scientists have a pretty good idea. MDO’s.

On the one hand, it is true that the current freeze is the product of the ‘Arctic oscillation’ – a weather pattern that sees the development of huge ‘blocking’ areas of high pressure in northern latitudes, driving polar winds far to the south.

Meteorologists say that this is at its strongest for at least 60 years.

As a result, the jetstream – the high-altitude wind that circles the globe from west to east and normally pushes a series of wet but mild Atlantic lows across Britain – is currently running not over the English Channel but the Strait of Gibraltar.

However, according to Prof Latif and his colleagues, this in turn relates to much longer-term shifts – what are known as the Pacific and Atlantic ‘multi-decadal oscillations’ (MDOs).

For Europe, the crucial factor here is the temperature of the water in the middle of the North Atlantic, now several degrees below its average when the world was still warming.

But the effects are not confined to the Northern Hemisphere. Prof Anastasios Tsonis, head of the University of Wisconsin Atmospheric Sciences Group, has recently shown that these MDOs move together in a synchronised way across the globe, abruptly flipping the world’s climate from a ‘warm mode’ to a ‘cold mode’ and back again in 20 to 30-year cycles.

‘They amount to massive rearrangements in the dominant patterns of the weather,’ he said yesterday, ‘and their shifts explain all the major changes in world temperatures during the 20th and 21st Centuries.

Note the point about the temperature of water.

They say that their research shows that much of the warming was caused by oceanic cycles when they were in a ‘warm mode’ as opposed to the present ‘cold mode’.

Among the “they” saying that is Professor Mojib Latif and a research crew at the prestigious Leibniz Institute at Germany’s Kiel University. Latif is also a member of the IPCC. He and his research team have “developed new methods for measuring ocean temperatures 3,000ft beneath the surface, where the cooling and warming cycles start.”

‘A significant share of the warming we saw from 1980 to 2000 and at earlier periods in the 20th Century was due to these cycles – perhaps as much as 50 per cent.

‘They have now gone into reverse, so winters like this one will become much more likely. Summers will also probably be cooler, and all this may well last two decades or longer.

‘The extreme retreats that we have seen in glaciers and sea ice will come to a halt. For the time being, global warming has paused, and there may well be some cooling.’

The MDO cycles are pretty obvious for those who will look:

Prof Tsonis said that the period from 1915 to 1940 saw a strong warm mode, reflected in rising temperatures.

But from 1940 until the late Seventies, the last MDO cold-mode era, the world cooled, despite the fact that carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere continued to rise.

Many of the consequences of the recent warm mode were also observed 90 years ago.

As mentioned in the article, in 1922 the Washington Post noted that Greenland’s glaciers were disappearing and that arctic ice was melting – exactly the same phenomenon we’ve experienced as a result of what these scientists say are the MDOs. And Latif is now convinced that the temperature, as reflected by cooling deep in the oceans, is now headed down as a new MDO takes effect. Some of the signs are quite convincing – such as the depth and length of this “cold snap”. Al Gore’s prediction that the arctic ice pack would disappear also seems in jeopardy:

According to the US National Snow and Ice Data Centre in Colorado, Arctic summer sea ice has increased by 409,000 square miles, or 26 per cent, since 2007…

Professor Tsonis, like Latif, is hardly a denier, but he also isn’t impressed with the computer models which have driven the AGW claims:

‘I do not believe in catastrophe theories. Man-made warming is balanced by the natural cycles, and I do not trust the computer models which state that if CO2 reaches a particular level then temperatures and sea levels will rise by a given amount.

‘These models cannot be trusted to predict the weather for a week, yet they are running them to give readings for 100 years.’

I couldn’t agree more. You remember the Warmergate emails in which the AGW “scientists” wished for a good explanation for why the earth seems to be cooling? Well this is most likely it – and, much to their chagrin, CO2 and man have little if anything to do with it.

And because of that, it will most likely be studiously ignored by the “settled science” Copenhagen crowd.



26 Responses to Mini-Ice Age?

  • The AGW crowd refused to even use the phrase “natural aberration” or “natural abnormality” till this “cooling trend” appeared.

    • I got that wrong ..

      Steve Dorling, of the University of East Anglia’s school of environmental sciences — yes, the UEA of “climategate” email fame — warns that it is “wrong to focus on single events, which are the product of natural variability”.

      I meant the phrase “natural variability”

  • Is there a way we can take collective legal action against these fearmongers now?

  • It snowed in Miami this weekend.

    That’s Miami, Florida.  Tropical Miami, Florida.

    I took a picture of the ice on my car this morning and E-mailed it to Al Gore.  I eagerly await a response.

  • “No one is quite sure what drives these flip-flops in air pressure.”  There’s the quote of the day.
    But they ARE sure about man made global warming, right?  They don’t understand why the air-pressure flip flops, but they DO understand EVERYTHING else and can explain it all (except for, like this, the stuff they can’t explain) and it all points to too many people, too many SUV’s in the United States  and Anthropogenic Global Warming forced by Carbon Dioxide (and evil Rich Americans)
    This is like a picture puzzle of the Sistine Chapel.  If they come to any one part of the puzzle ( causes cold oscillations, like THIS one) and they don’t know what causes it,  they don’t have such a swell idea about the picture.   As with many theories we have in science we seem to be able to explain many things (the theories hold together) even though we might have a partial picture in front of us, it’s enough to work with.  After all some of the pieces around the edge may be missing, and not dramatically influence the quality of the picture and understanding.  But big chunks are missing from the very center of the puzzle here (we don’t know why this thing happened and it suddenly got cold…all over the Northern Hemisphere!).  I’d say they have a problem in the claim they can tell for sure that God is reaching his hand out to Mickey Mouse up there on the vaulted ceiling.
    It doesn’t help we find the kids have been diligently creating puzzle pieces with their crayons (Mann Hockey Sticks, ClimateGate) and insisting, very loudly, those single color stick figures of Mickey Mouse BELONG in the puzzle picture of the Sistine Chapel.

  • Are you saying that Scott Erb is wrong!?

    • We’re not progressives, so, yes, we can say that.  Nor will it be the first time such a thing has been said, or demonstrated.

  • Make no mistake.  The AGW crowd will take ownership of this phenomena in order to downplay it and hide the false panic from the warming spell we had during the few decades before this one.  You see back then it was ok to exclaim “Doom!” from a trend of one or two decades.  But the trend of one or two decades of cooling will be meaningless. 

    They’ll comeback with a kinder and gentler message of Doom that permits decade long oscillations without disavowing AGW completely.  “Doom!” will be postponed but not cancelled. 

    • … but they have got it wrong, this recent (last 5 or 6 decades) ‘warming trend” is a product of “Global Cooling” and well withing the “natural variability”

  • One thing we’re seeing:

    The “warmer” planet we saw in the ’90s and ’00s is unpleasant.

    The “colder” planet we’re seeing now is bloody lethal.

  • The tendency to put all people in a category (i.e., liberals and coppehagan crowd) does little to further the debate. It seems that it is easier for the neolibertians to see all things through their rose-colored screening glasses of their own delusional view of the world.

    • Really? And didn’t you just indulge in what you previously condemned?

      We call that irony around here. We also call it hypocrisy.

      There’s plenty in there to “further the debate” if you’re not too busy trying to find reasons to be offended.

    • Here is my witty and intellectual rejoinder:  Bite me.

    • Would that be the debate where some people (who all, dang it, DO seem to be “liberals and the Copenhagen crowd”) dismiss us “deniers” and scream at us that “the science is settled!”?

      Or the debate where some people (dang it, still seem to all be “liberals and the Copenhagen crowd”) use phony and / or cherrypicked data to support their argument?

      Or the debate where, instead of talking about the data and science at all, some people (wow, sensing a pattern here about “liberals and the Copenhagen crowd”) get snippy and start lecturing about how we shouldn’t make things personal or indulge in name-calling?

      Help me out here.

    • Is this how you further the debate?  I’m assuming you are talking about the debate pertaining to man forced global warming.  From my perspective, I’ve been told there IS no debate, we ARE causing it, the science is SETTLED, there  is CONSENSUS.
      Then along comes this nasty cold weather, coupled with continued failure to warm over the last decade, a failure for the oceans to rise and engulf the coastal cities and plains, many predictions worth of failures.  And now the warmists are called to account for their creation of hysteria and suddenly want to debate (don’t you mean stifle unrest and inquiry)?
      Which type of glass is it that allows your delusional world view?  Go over the history, in many cases our concerns have not solely been refutation of warming, but to ensure that the proposed massive re-distribution of the wealth brought on by legislation to “halt it” would in fact succeed in doing something other than making everybody, with the exception of perhaps Al Gore and his cronies, poorer as we spend money on pipe dreams trying to prevent something that cannot be prevented because we are NOT causing it.
      Practical, as opposed to what?  Your Plan to do what?  Get the world to hold hands, mentally sing Kumbayah, and take one breath every other minute to reduce the release of CO2 ?  While the US learns to reduce it’s standard of living and hands out cash to every Tom, Dick and Harry from the Third World for no good purpose?
      Rose colored indeed.

    • Shorter Ron:  Neolibertarians are all delusional and should stop stereotyping and namecalling.

  • {chuckle} You dense righties just can’t get over your fixation on “evidence” can you? All those charts and graphs are so inconsequential next to the godlike powers of political science of we wise leftists. LOL.

    The train has left the station, and you’re not on it, and history will record how vicious, nasty, mean-spiritied, Nazi-like thuggish righties tried and failed to prevent we post-modern leftists from saving the planet, and how along the way we became the dominant political class because only we can hand out the goodies, um, I mean allocate the resources in a fair way for the good of all, including holy Gaia.

    Global warming is a fact. I decree it. We wise leftists have reached a consensus on that. I’m part of the consensus along with others in my faculty lounge, and don’t start up about how we don’t know any real science or statistics or what-not, just don’t start! We have godlike powers of –political– science, which is the most important kind, and which enables us to listen to all sides of the argument and sort through the multiple truths to compel you grunt engineering types on the Neanderthal conservative side to do what’s right. And what’s right always means what gives us more power, because we have your best interests in mind.

    So trust us, and stop this inconsequential bleating about how there’s no warming and it’s a travesty that our elegant and excellent models can’t explain why. The researchers in East Anglia and at the University of Pennsylvania just need to do a bit of tweaking and those hockey sticks will pop right up again. And I hope our wise and unbiased researchers get that done soon, because the pond down the road is absolutely frozen solid and we could use some extra hockey sticks.

  • What we need to do is come up with some sort of “Truth Commission” that will allow those scientists who are scared to admit cheating to slowly go back on the fence or even cross to the other side.
    Maybe guarantee their tenure or lifetime salary if they fess up. Its cheaper than actually having the carbon tax.

    • either that, or a truth commision in which we find all the liars, remove all their credentials and sue them for all their wealth and drop them off in a homeless shelter. Then maybe in the future, people might think twice about perpetuating a giant hoax.

      • There’s always civil court, prove some kind of damages & sue Al Gore.  You too can own a house that’s green yet draws more power in a month from the grid than the average American household uses in a year.

    • It’s too late.  The damage being done to public confidence in scientific research will take a very long time to heal, and there is a lot of damage yet to be done.  The impression I get is that there is a very desperate political push to get some sort of climate change legislation in place, and anything that can be thrown at the wall is fair game.  “Ocean acidification” is the newest canard.  If we don’t stop pumping CO2 into the oceans, we’ll destroy every coral and shellfish in the world!
      That may not even be the worst that they come up with before they’re done.  In ten years, they’ll have effectively destroyed any shred of credibility with the public.  Science as a religion, the irony is almost too much…