Light in the Storm
This is your light in the storm for accurate weather forecasting in the tri-state area

It is generally incontrovertible that a doubling of Co2 imparts 3.7 +/- 0.4 W/m2 of radiative forcing at the tropopause, and some hypothesize that this energy imbalance can only be remedied via an increase in tropospheric temperatures. The inquiry to pose is not whether Co2 imparts additional radiative forcing, but what precisely is the Earth system response, particularly insofar as its sensitivity (quantified with values such as TCR and ECS). Those who subscribe to doomsday type scenarios typically foresee realized ECS values of at least 2.5C to upwards of 4C (keep in mind, ECS involves full equilibration while TCR is less than 100 years). However, there is a significant amount of literature which concludes much lower ECS values, on the order of 1.0c-1.5c and even under 1.0c. Co2 radiative forcing is hypothesized to induce a tropospheric temperature increase of approximately 1.0c. This is somewhat irrelevant though, in light of the fact that Earth’s feedback systems will alter (possibly significantly) the resultant value. Both the magnitude and direction of the feedbacks are in dispute as far as the real literature is concerned, with the lower (higher) ECS values asserting net negative (positive) feedbacks. One integral feedback process is the development of low level cloudiness due to the fact that these clouds are predominately sfc-cooling rather than heat trapping (e.g., higher level clouds).

 

 

Now, in terms of the solar component — one is grossly underestimating the effects of solar activity by only examining TSI. There are solar amplification mechanisms beyond TSI (variations in UV radiation and corresponding modulation of atmospheric ozone chemistry, thus, indirectly affecting climate; changes in radiative forcing due to less (more) clouds via decreases (increases) in cosmic rays; cosmic ray impact on the lower stratospheric ozone budget, the influence of ozone on the temperature/humidity trends near the tropopause and consequently the greenhouse effect; variations in geomagnetic activity, particularly concerning their impact at higher latitudes, and finally, the cumulative forcing induced by successive solar cycles of high magnitude on the climate regime). Accumulated solar energy has a much higher correlation to global temperature than sunspot cycling. Due to the Earth’s thermal inertia via the slower equilibration induced by the oceans, it takes awhile for the full effects of heightened solar forcing to manifest in terms of surface temperatures. And thus, multiple similar strong solar cycles, while not increasing in magnitude, will certainly aid in enhancing the warming over time. This is why many are incorrect in expecting a quick and sudden drop in global temperatures in the past decade, immediately during/following one less active cycle. A pot on a stove will not necessarily begin cooling if one decreases the intensity of the burner. If the incoming energy is still greater than or equal to the established equilibrium point, cooling will not commence. The point of equivalency, namely, energy inputted = energy output, has not yet been reached insofar as the Earth system in my opinion. Only about 20% of the oceans receive solar insolation; thus, conduction and fluid motion are responsible for the equilibration process which is extremely protracted. Statistical relationships between solar forcing and sfc T are therefore usually nonexistent if one does not consider temporal dissociation w/ the pathways of response.

 

It is unsurprising to me that global temperatures surged in late 1990s, approximately 30-40 years subsequent to peak solar forcing in the 1960s. Accumulated solar energy and concomitant oceanic thermal inertia necessitates a lagged sfc T response.

 

The following are studies corroborating the aforementioned assertions.

 

Identification of a 10-30 year lag b/t solar forcing and temperature response:

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1029/2008GL035930/full

 

The following paper demonstrates that solar activity in the most recent period was at its highest levels in 9,400 years.

https://www.aanda.org/index.php?option=com_article&access=doi&doi=10.1051/0004-6361/201219997&Itemid=129

 

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This paper – “Revisiting the Sunspot Number – A 400-Year Perspective on the Solar Cycle” Frédéric Clette · Leif Svalgaard · José M. Vaquero ·

Edward W. Cliver

 

Important quote from the study:

 

“Still, although the levels of activity were not exceptional except maybe for cycle 19, the particularly long sequence of strong cycles in the late 20th remains a noteworthy episode. Indeed, the 400-year sunspot record and one of its by products, the number of spotless days, show that such a tight sequence of 5 strong cycles over 6 successive cycles (from 17 to 22, except 20), which we can call the “Modern Maximum”, is still unique over at least the last four centuries. Given the inertia of natural systems exposed to the solar influences, like the Earth atmosphere-ocean system, this cycle clustering could still induce a peak in the external responses to solar activity, like the Earth climate. However, we conclude that the imprint of this Modern Maximum (e.g. Earth climate forcing) would essentially result from time-integration effects (system inertia) [i.e. the sunspot time-integral].”

 

Another paper demonstrating that variation in SSN leads T by 30-40 years:

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/268882338_Correlation_between_solar_activity_and_the_local_temperature_of_Antarctica_during_the_past_11000_years

 

If one merely juxtaposes the global temperature anomaly record of the late 1800s and early 1900s, one can see the effect of thermal inertia to which I refer herein. The onset of cooling initiated 7-10 years following very low solar forcing with the minimum in global temperatures achieved at least 25 years subsequent to the initiation of suppressed solar forcing.

 

Below are several papers demonstrating ECSs of 0.5c to 1.5c:

 

ECS 1.35C:

http://arxiv.org/abs/1307.3706

ECS 1.1C:

http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:3b7otVla9qgJ:www-eaps.mit.edu/faculty/lindzen/236-Lindzen-Choi-2011.pdf+&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us

ECS 1.5C:

http://arxiv.org/abs/1310.7554

ECS 0.6C:

http://www.seipub.org/des/paperInfo.aspx?ID=17162

ECS 0.6C:

http://www.scipublish.com/journals/ACC/papers/846

 

To disambiguate: in totality, my argument – simplified and elucidated – is as follows: anthropogenic climate change exists and Co2 radiative forcing is legitimate; however, the solar forcing component is significantly underestimated given there is a myopic proclivity to concentrate on TSI variations, while concurrently failing to recognize the other, integral modulatory mechanisms of the Sun. Further, the effects of thermal inertia are largely ignored, which plays an exceptionally influential role in determining the atmospheric response time. The rate of warming/cooling will alter as a function of forcing alterations, but cooling will not initiate until forcing is sufficiently low to fall below the current, established equilibrium. If my and innumerable other scientists’ hypotheses are correct, sfc T response is still ahead of us. I think the rate of warming will continue to decrease over the coming two years with the onset of cooling (versus 1998-present levels) likely to occur within the next several years. The magnitude of the cooling (speculation) over the course of the next two decades could be 0.3 or 0.4c, bringing us down near global temperatures of the 1980s. Again, the key question here is relative attribution of Co2 RF vs solar RF; we shall see what we shall see.



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