France – Worst rains in 50 years a reminder of Little Ice Age floods

Reminds me of the Little Ice Age floods that wiped out the bridge in Avignon.


Floodwaters along the rain-engorged Seine River are threatening towns downstream from Paris, said an article today from the AP.

The national weather service said that “January has seen nearly double normal rainfall nationwide, and that the rains in the past two months are the highest measured for the period in 50 years.

The article then went on to warn (of course) that France’s heaviest rains in 50 years have “raised concerns about climate change.”

Those floods raise my concerns, too. But not because of so-called “climate change.” Instead, they remind me of the Little Ice Age floods that wiped out the bridge in Avignon.

I visited the Pont d’Avignon a couple of years ago. Also known as the Pont Saint-Bénézet, the Pont d’Avignon is a famous medieval bridge in the town of Avignon, in southern France.

The bridge, built between 1177 and 1185, spanned the Rhône River between Avignon and Villeneuve-lès-Avignon. It boasted an original length of some 900 meters (980 yards) (More than half-a-mile.)

Unfortunately, Little-Ice-Age floods destroyed it.

Here’s a photo of an artist’s rendering of the Pont d’Avignon that I took while visiting the bridge.

According to a placard at the bridge, “In the 15th century, climate change occurred. (Yep, the placard actually used those words, ‘climate change.’)

“Europe entered the little ice age,” the words on the placard continued, “which significantly changed the hydrological conditions of the Rhône catchment area…”

Then, beginning in the early 1600s the arches were “regularly swept away” by  flooding.

Finally a catastrophic flood in 1669 swept away much of the structure, says Wikipedia. Only four of the initial 22 arches remain, and the bridge has not been used after the 17th century.

Photo of drawbridge, taken from the bridge. 
All that remains of the bridge.

The AP may wring its hands over man-made “climate change,” but with the lowest sunspot count in more than a hundred years, I’m much more worried about what Mother Nature may have in store for us.

Instead, this raises my concerns that we could be headed into another little ice age.

24 thoughts on “France – Worst rains in 50 years a reminder of Little Ice Age floods”

  1. São Joaquim-SC (Southern Brazil Highlands ) begins the day with very cold and frost on points at the top of the mountain (1.4°C Urupema / Epagri), Climaterra now with 8.2°C and 500 m with
    6, 2°C/ F.Keiser / Flag District.
    Today we completed 7 days with very weak frost this summer at the top of the mountain range, 5 in December and 2 in January, only in 2008/2009 there were more (13 days and in all the months of the summer, December to March).
    -“La Niña is coming and it seems she’ll come sooner this year.”

  2. European Winter: dark December, snowy January

    In Europe this winter due to the activity of the cyclones is very cloudy and damp. Winter in a number of regions has become the darkest in the last 70 years. In the Alps – abnormally snowy, in France – anomalously rainy! In Paris, a strong flood continues.

    The winter of 2017-18 in Europe is influenced by Atlantic cyclones, whose activity literally goes off scale! The main consequences of this activity are an increased amount of clouds and precipitation.

    Large values ​​of cloudiness led to the fact that ‘last December became one of the darkest in the history of meteorological observations’. We already wrote that in Moscow December was a record dark (the Sun only looked for 6-7 minutes, while the full disk of the Sun did not show up once, and this instead of the put ones for 18 hours!), But little of the Sun was observed in other Russian cities. So, in St. Petersburg, the sun was only for 3 hours (instead of 9 hours), in Smolensk – 6 (and should be 20), in Kostroma – at 5 hours (normal: 13.5 hours).

    Little is the Sun and in Western Europe. So, in Belgium for December and January, instead of the put 104 hours of sunshine, there were only 30.5. In Latvia, only 9 sunny hours were counted in December (instead of 21), it was anomalously dark in neighboring Finland. In Germany, the darkest winter has been observed since 1951.

    It’s no wonder that many residents in Europe these days complain of depression and are happy with every sunny moment!

    However, the clouds – this is not the only consequence of increased cyclonic activity. In Europe, there is also an abnormally high amount of precipitation! The main snowfalls are in the mountains (the orographic effect of precipitation is affected: air is forced to rise in front of the obstacle, as a result of which precipitation occurs more efficiently). Alps this year received almost a record amount of snow: in France, Switzerland and Italy from the beginning of January fell from 1 to 3 m of fresh snow, a number of resorts for some time was cut off from the outside world. There is a danger of avalanches.

    A large amount of precipitation is not only a threat of avalanches, but also floods! Now there is a severe flood in France, came out of the banks of the Seine, the water level is three times higher than the norm. Water flooded a number of streets of Paris, for a visit the Louvre was closed.

  3. I would be interested to learn more about what life was like before this very elegant looking bridge got destroyed. This is because before the little ice age France would have enjoyed the medieval warm period and I can only imagine what the wine must have tasted like. Had I been around I would most certainly have made the most of said warm period LOL.
    I can also only imagine what causes warming when CO2 levels could not be blamed. This was well before the industrial revolution.

    • Actually during the midevil warm period southern France’s wine industry suffered from competition from the north. Even in England people were growing grapes and making their own wine.

  4. Robert,
    You said above:
    “Instead, this raises my concerns that we could be headed into another little ice age.”

    I’m thinking that because we have a little more carbon dioxide in the air we may be better able to withstand a “little ice age” I am however much more concerned about a “real” ice age, are you not at all concerned about that?

    • I fail to see how “a little more CO2 in the air” would make any difference to the climate during a L.I.A. Greenhouse theory is fake science.

    • Joseph, climate “scientists” claim the “greenhouse effect” is defined in terms of the Stefan-Boltzmann equation. They state Earth has only one method of removing energy from the biosphere – by radiating infra-red radiation to space.

      99% of the atmosphere does not radiate appreciable infra-red radiation – if Nitrogen and Oxygen radiated appreciable infra-red radiation at ambient temperatures a lot of working technological devices – night vision for example – simply would not work.

      The Stefan-Boltzmann equation is a black body equation and is modified by a factor with a value between 0 and 1 called emissivity.

      Thus at a temperature of say 30°C a black body radiates power at a higher level than a real body.

      Extra CO2 in the atmosphere increases the emissivity of the atmosphere as CO2 is slightly infra-red active meaning it will radiate more power at the same temperature than without that CO2.

      Therefore it is highly unlikely more CO2 in the atmosphere will mean “we may be better able to withstand a “little ice age”” – increasing the emissivity of the atmosphere inevitably means the exact opposite.

      Of course luckily for us the Stefan-Boltzmann equation doesn’t apply to the atmosphere – but more CO2 does increase the amount of radiation to space as EVERY satellite data set shows. If there isn’t more radiation to space the satellites would indicate cooling and not warming.

      If all of physics is right than increased CO2 levels could mean any ice age – “little” or otherwise – might be worse.

      Fortunately (?) for us most of the extra CO2 in the atmosphere is from sources we have no control over.

    • Robert Filex is very concerned about that he has been very clear about it in his book and in interview shows of how we are due for everyone of the cycles of the entire ice age process.

    • Robert is right to be concerned,
      The connecting factor in every solar minimum between cycles and every Grand Solar Minimum during the whole cycle is the lack of Sun spots, and the 16% drop in EUV output and a significant reduction in the power of the Solar Wind when the number of spots is reduced.
      The out edge of full size spots, which can be seen with 40MM optic, is one of the primary sources of EUV emission from the Sun.
      EUV or lack of it entering the atmosphere drives the shape and power of the Worlds Jet Streams, and the blocking systems which stick them in one location for weeks at a time. Jet streams drive the climate, and either brings cold south and warmish weather to the poles, together with the cloud and wet weather system carried on them.
      Flooding is a known factor of a stuck jet stream

  5. Question: Why only a little ice age.

    Since 80% of volcanoes are underwater the rise in activity of land volcanoes indicates four times as many are becoming more active underwater. The increase in geothermal activity occurs locally and escapes detection because it takes a very long time to show up as an increase in overall ocean temperature. So its only sign would be increased precipitation.

    If previous ice ages are an indicator we are now just waiting for a huge land eruption to provide the ash to lower atmospheric temperatures so the moisture falls as snow instead of rain. As volcanic activity continues the cycle continues now intensfied by the change in the albedo of the earth.

    While it is true that minor changes in the sun cause little ice ages, there is strong evidence that elements that can result in a big ice age that may be somewhat overdue are also present.

    • I question that 80% figure. When I began writing Not by Fire but by Ice back in 1991, scientists guestimated that 80% of all volcanic activity took place underwater. That was when they thought there were perhaps 10,000 volcanoes in the entire world. Now, although scientists admit that there may be more than 4 million underwater volcanoes, they still cling to that 80% ratio.

  6. Yes, I agree, the Great Cooling will begin with massive rainstorms, increased cloud cover in the Northern Hemisphere, a general dimming of the sun force!

    So it began at the beginning of the fourteenth century, a dramatic worsening of Europe s weather, which brought an end to the High Middle Ages (which saw great progress and prosperity), the age of the Great Cathedrals. That all came to an end, followed by the Great Plague…

    These are trying times indeed…

  7. Get ready for what the main society won’t tell you about. Until too late. Then they may try to twist it into “caused by global warming.” Guilt at using fossil fuels so they can control people.

  8. If we are lucky the little or big ice age will shake things up so much that there will be total upheaval everywhere and those who caused all the problems in the world to date can be brought to justice and disposed of and society reorganized on a more natural and healthy basis. I’m thinking the future of sovereignty and government involves serious downsizing and an end to global governance or anything that looks like it.

    • With a major glaciation period many countries above 40 degree Lat, North or South will cease to exist, possibly with 20 years of the start of year round Ice and snow.
      The reason most of the current arible land in the Northern hemispere would convert back to tundra and perma frost.
      During a LIA Northern states would cease growing Wheat.
      For example this graphic show the wheat output during SC20 and the rising wheat output during the very warm Solar cycles SC21,SC22 and SC23, but notice the drop towards the end of SC23

      A second point is Solar Warm Periods like MANNS none existent Medievile Warm period barley could be grown in Greenland prior to the WOLF GSM but not after.
      24000 years ago.

    • ” the future of sovereignty and government involves serious downsizing ”

      Steven … we should be so lucky. But downsized governments would likely open the door to drug cartels, mafia and other private groups (Blackstone, Soros, bankers) with ample resources who would take advantage of any power voids. Unless they were all to be marginalized in the process as well — which likely wouldn’t last long. The key IMO is implementing an accountable justice system that the wealthy can’t buy. There have been next to no consequences for malfeasance in the public realm aside from a few scapegoats. Direct election of judges? Then randomly assigned to cases?

      • Direct election of judges–that’s a tough one, Pieter. Money can buy elections, and often does. I don’t know the answer. Human greed always seems to misdirect the best intentions.

        These matters remind me of the closing lines of Thackery’s novel, Barry Lynden. Written in the mid-1800’s, the book was a fictional account set in the previous century.

        ” It was in the reign of George III that the aforesaid personages lived and quarreled; good or bad, handsome or ugly, rich or poor they are all equal now.”

  9. Hey guys, Isn’t this chemtrail spraying hastening the cooling? It’s certainly cutting down on the amount of sunlight that’s reaching the surface of land and sea.

    Why can’t people remember that this overcast, this sick grayish-whitish-pale bluish low ceiling used to be unusual? The usual was a very high blue sky w normal clouds. They are hastening the cooling guys.

  10. Will more CO2 in the atmosphere help us resist a little ice age??

    I think it will, not so much for any climate or temperature effect, but because more CO2 increases the growth rate, productivity, temperature tolerance, and moisture tolerance of most food crops. Thus, more CO2 lessens (or delays) the famine effect of a little ice age.

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