Sun’s ultraviolet light could explain connection between Maunder Minimum and the Little Ice Age

“Recent cold winters that brought chaos to the UK and other places in northern Europe may have their roots in the Sun’s varying ultraviolet emissions,” says this article in BBC News.

These revelations  come from the SOlar Radiation and Climate Experiment (SORCE), a NASA satellite launched in 2003.



The satellite’s Spectral Irradiance Monitor (SIM) records variations in the Sun’s UV emissions during a sunspot cycle. These emissions are about five times larger than previously believed.

When researchers plugged SIM’s measurements into the Met Office Hadley Centre climate computer model, the results reinforced the idea that the UV variations do indeed affect winter weather, and showed how the process might work.

“UV is absorbed in the upper atmosphere by ozone. In the quiet part of the solar cycle when there is less UV to absorb, the stratosphere is relatively cooler.”

This changes wind speeds, including the jet stream, and re-distributes temperatures around the globe.

In addition to the 11-year sunspot cycle, the Sun’s output also varies on longer timescales.

The Sun’s intensity has increased since the 1600s when sunspots almost disappeared for decades, a period known as the Maunder Minimum.

The Maunder Minimum coincided with the Little Ice Age, when winter weather overall grew colder in parts of Europe.

“Mike Lockwood of the UK’s Reading University, who also studies possible associations between solar changes and climate, suggested that if the Sun’s ultraviolet output varies as much on long timescales as it does across the solar cycle, that could provide the connection between the Maunder Minimum and the temperature changes.”

Note: The researchers insist that “there is no impact on global warming.” It simply “re-distributes temperatures,” leading to warmer winters in some places and colder winters in others.

I find that hard to believe. I think we’ll eventually learn that temperatures declined around the globe during the Little Ice Age.

I’ve simplified this considerably, so you’ll probably want to see the entire article:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-15199065

Thanks to Icewoman, Mick Russell and Steve Foster for this link


16 thoughts on “Sun’s ultraviolet light could explain connection between Maunder Minimum and the Little Ice Age”

  1. Hey Robert! They keep trying to rewrite history, but I’m old school and had the best geology prof’s a man could hope for, and climatology classes, over thirty years ago.

    “As can be seen from the figure, climate change from Norway to New Zealand and from the Dry Tortugas to Peru all indicate that the Little Ice Age was not a localized anomaly but a world wide event. But then, this is only the most recent study to affirm this fact. In a 1986 paper, entitiled “The Little Ice Age as Recorded in the Stratigraphy of the Tropical Quelccaya Ice Cap,” L. G. Thompson et al., after analyzing more than 1000 years of ice core data from another tropical glacier, reported similar results. In fact, this study provided the data in sections E and F of the figure above. The authors of this study, performed two decades earlier, concluded: “The fact that the Little Ice Age (about A.D. 1500 to 1900) stands out as a significant climatic event in the oxygen isotope and electrical conductivity records confirms the worldwide character of this event.”

    http://www.theresilientearth.com/?q=content/peruvian-glaciers-prove-little-ice-age-was-global

    • YEP! Glad I’m not the only “Old Schooler” on this web site… I will always remember what we were taught …
      “Numbers don’t lie, but liars use numbers.”

      People can be pretty dumb, but it will take more than a magician to convince people that they are freezing their butts off because it is getting warmer!!!

  2. when you even it up there’s no change to global temperatures, hmm so even a full blown ice age would be consistent with global warming so long as the heat went “somewhere else”?
    you can fool some of the paople some of the time…….

    • Jimb, “Cold” is described as the “absence of heat” so it doesnt go any where, it is just absent!
      There is no Warming. It is a normal cyclic event, similar to a fridge iceing up.
      Bob

      • So that’s why my freezer ices up and makes tons of ice cubes when I leave the door open. What I do, when it’s really hot, I open the freezer door and leave it open all day. The compressor cycles a whole bunch, and I get great quantities of ice cubes and the meat and veggies stay frozen much longer… LoL

        Global Warming is like that. Principle number one states: The hotter it gets, the colder it will be. Principle two says: For any given environmental change, warming always causes cooling, and cooling always brings about heating. Principle three: Deniers shall be burned alive.

        They have known about this “reverse effect” in the Southern United States, particularly Alabama, for over 150 years! Remember the words to Oh Suzanna, “… the Sun so hot, I froze to death …?”

        This is not a new phenomenon. Many people have sung about it for generations. They even talk about making “dry rain.”

        Seriously though, this is a parody on the kind of Koala Krap the AGW crowd is trying to pass off as “real science.”

  3. “there is no impact on global warming.” They are required to say that because “research” funding is predicated on a foregone conclusion. All results must be construed to support the political agenda. Of course the sun affects the whole planet, but they aren’t allowed to say so.

    • Here’s a kicker for ya. I saw one of those Yahoo answer thingies today where some ninny wrote in to ask “if the Sun is a million times bigger than Earth, why does it look smaller in the sky?”

      And my first reaction was “my God! what they heck are they teaching them these days?”

      Apparently, not only are they not allowed to talk about the Sun affecting our climate, they can’t even teach our students about how big the Sun is!

  4. Ozone holes in Antarctic and Arctic relate to cold rebounds from warming events
    By Joseph D’Aleo, Weatherbell.com

    “Spanning about 9.7 million square miles (25 million square kilometers), the ozone hole over the South Pole reached its maximum annual size on Sept. 14, 2011, coming in as the fifth largest on record.
    Years with large ozone holes are now more associated with VERY COLD winters over Antarctica and high polar winds that prevent the mixing of ozone-rich air outside of the polar circulation with the ozone-depleted air inside, the scientists say.
    INTENSE COLD in the upper atmosphere of the Arctic last winter activated ozone-depleting chemicals and produced the first significant ozone hole ever recorded over the high northern regions, scientists reported in the journal Nature.
    Also note the scientists mentioning the sulfuric acid mixture’s role in the ozone destruction. Sulfate aerosols are associated with volcanism and the recent high latitude volcanoes in Alaska, Iceland and Chile may have contributed to the blocking (warming). Like a pendulum, a swing to one state, can result in a rebound to the opposite extreme very obvious in the arctic.

    Remember we first found the ozone hole when satellites that measure ozone were first available and processed (1985). It is very likely to have been there forever,”
    Here’s the link: http://icecap.us/index.php/go/joes-blog

  5. We all know its a sham(AGW). What do we do about it? Keep chipping away at the AGW proponents with factual ice picks? Our progress seems to be proceeding at a glacial pace. Any ideas on how to speed up the process?

    • Vote for Herman Cain!

      Romney believes in Global Warming and favored Carbon Credits… He even gets advice on the matter from O-Bummer’s Climate Czar.

  6. WHAT? Are they sure it isn’t caused by flatulence? I mean, Al Gore himself told us that it was because of those gassy cows in California! Are they sure that this isn’t being caused by all the hot air spewed by the left wing “Watermelons?”

    GOSH! Is all this climate change really being caused by that great big fiery ball of nuclear energy that is like 1.3 million times the volume of the Earth?

    I feel let down. LoL ….

  7. Holes in the Recent Arctic Ozone Hole Story
    by Dr. Tim Ball on October 10, 2011

    http://drtimball.com/2011/holes-in-the-recent-arctic-ozone-hole-story/

    “Earth’s atmosphere does not work like a greenhouse, it’s an incorrect analogy. Similarly, there was no hole in the Antarctic ozone. There was a normal area of thinning, which was still approximately 1/3 of the thickness of the global average.”
    “It was assumed that UV was constant, which means measured ozone variation had another cause. They blamed CFC’s, without evidence. Subsequently it was shown variation was due to a combination of variation in UV, extremely COLD temperatures, formation of polar stratospheric clouds (PSC) and intense atmospheric circulation.”
    “Mainstream media ignored the cold arctic summer, the failure of sea ice to reach predicted low levels, and the ice reforming some three week ahead of average.”

  8. Again, I do not buy into anthropogenic warming, but I do agree that it is warmer now than it was in the 70’s when I was a kid. Used to have frost on the windshield when I was a kid a few days in January and a few in February. Been back in southeast Texas now since 1994 and haven’t seen any frost on the windshields since I’ve been back. There has been frost on roofs, but nothing on the windshields. Used to have more than several freezes during the winter. Now we’re lucky to have one or two during an entire winter. We just suffered through the hottest summer on record since records started being kept in 1895. Hottest August on record, 5th hottest July on record, hottest June on record. Of course part of that is due to the worst 1 year Texas drought on record. I do agree that the climate has cycles due to the orbit around the sun, the pacifical decadal osscilation, cosmic wave activity and sunspot activity. Not sure about how the jet stream enters into that yet. I truly enjoy this web site, but I do believe in global warming, just not human caused.

  9. Here is something I’ve been considering for some time. If you will notice where a lot of the heat is in the world, it is largely concentrated around areas where there are more people. You could have a room with one person in it and it might be cool. Put an hundred people in it and it could be hot. We should take into account that humans are warm creatures and that shared warmth, not industrial pollution is what may be heating up some areas such as our cities. It is a fact that during the summer it appears to be hotter in large cities. Just a thought. I’m not an MGWist!

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