Over on WUWT I made a comment:
That article is about some interesting patterns in Sea Surface Temperatures (mostly which oceans are warming and which are cooling). The comments here will make more sense if you have read the article there, and looked at the ocean temperature charts in that article.
What I think I noticed is that some temperatures were time lagged relative to others, and that shifts start in The Southern Ocean and arrive last at the North Atlantic and the Arctic Ocean. Similarly, time for cold water to get into the Indian Ocean is time lagged as it crosses the Pacific to get there.
This posting is just to preserve that comment where I can find it, and remind me to do a bit more “Digging” to see if I can prove the thought, or disprove it.
With that, the comment:
April 30, 2012 at 12:18 pm
At the conference in Chicago a couple of years back, there was a presentation on the heat flow patterns in the Pacific. It demonstrated a, roughly IIRC, 18 year time lag from a cooling or warming spike into the center of the Pacific, and when that band of temperatures eventually reached Alaska.
Given that, I would expect that it will be a while before the full impact of cold is felt in the Arctic. ( One might presume a similar pattern for the Atlantic, but with different time constants due to different size and currents).
In 1998 or so we had our peak. A bit later a cold dagger of south polar water ran up the coast of Chile and out into the center of the Pacific. At the time, I noted that there was now a timer running before the Global Warming rant about heating in the Arctic and Canada would run into a coldening North Pacific.
IMHO, these graphs show that initial cold plunge in the Southern Ocean, then the “fall off a cliff” in the North Pacific about 2008, 2011. There’s also an interesting “Spike and plunge” in 1998 / 2000 that is often seen in stock charts. (It’s a natural artifact of many systems. When riding a bike, for example, to turn right, the handlebars are first deflected just a tiny bit left first, that then leans the bike and you enter a right hand turn, the handlebars are then adjusted right to balance the turn. Learning to do that counter intuitive ‘right then left’ is why so many kids fall over when learning to ride a bike… It is taught as a deliberate awareness in motorcycle classes as a 1000 lb superbike does not respond as much to body lean and the handlebars become much more important to understand…) To me that “pop and drop” is the signature event of a major reversal.
Then we get the 18 year time lag to full effect. Call it 2016. Mark your calendars…
BTW, I can only wonder if we did a little study of the Indian Ocean if we might find a longer time period for the Pacific / Southern ocean cold to make it to that ocean. Once that happens, the whole system is in dramatic cooling.
As that cold spike headed up the Chilean coast, it had to suck other water down to the Southern Ocean to replace it. That water would have come from oceans fronting on the Southern Ocean, which would then have pulled other water into those oceans. IFF that water came from the Indian Ocean and / or the South Atlantic, those oceans would have gained replacement water from warmer areas more north (or East in the case of the Indian ocean – from the mid-Pacific…)
IF that has some truth to it, one would expect the Indian and South Atlantic oceans to follow the cooling of the Pacific with some years of time lag. So I’m putting down a “Watch This Space” marker. By 2020 both of those oceans ought to be showing significant cooling trends.
That’s the point where AGW as a thesis is “deep sixed”… as it will be obvious to everyone we’re in a dramatic coldening process of multi decadal length.
This speculation would benefit from looking at an actual map of ocean currents, where they come from and where the go to.
Makes it look like the North Indian ocean is a bit isolated with a circulating warm current, so slow to cool. South Atlantic looks to be fed from the Southern Ocean with the North Atlantic a bit isolated (so it ought to lag, too – just NOW getting a warm spike like that seen in the Pacific and Southern back in 1998; so I’d guess about a 10 to 12 year lag).
So a ‘first blush’ look at that (simplified and maybe just surface currents) map would seem to offer some confirmation of the idea. One would also speculate that Australia and the Pacific Islands ought to show the cold turn very rapidly. Wonder if it’s been cold Down Under lately… Any tendency to cold on the West Coast would imply a cooling Indian Ocean ‘on the way’ as the Southern Ocean current has to pass by there first.
Last on the list looks to be Eastern USA / Southern Europe. (Gee, hasn’t it been cold on the West Coast of the USA and warm on the East Coast… I think maybe this thesis ‘has legs’… certainly enough for a ‘dig here!’…)
It would be interesting to plot AMO vs PDO and European / African thermometers vs West Coast USA / Australia / Chile thermometers and see if there is a decade or so ‘offset’ between peaks and valleys. (Another “dig here!”)…
Simple to check, interesting if it plays out…
I’d also note that there was a follow up that prompted this bit of detail about the reference to an 18 year ocean lag in the Pacific:
May 2, 2012 at 1:46 am
The time delay in the Pacific to which I referred was a lag in propagation of surface water temperatures. I think it was due to the time it took for bands of water to move from the central Pacific (where they arrive from along the coast of Chile / Peru) to work their way all the way up to Alaska.
My notes from here:
We then got a bonus of a video clip that I think was presented by Gary Sharp. It showed the heat / cold cycling of water in the pacific over decades as El Niño comes and goes. How to put a movie into words? Not well… But you see the warm and cold moving and swirling and you start to see patterns, one is that it drifts north over time.
The Punch Lines being that that heat reaches the Arctic going past Alaska about 18 years after generation in the Pacific. So the warming in 2008 melting ice comes from a 1990 hot Pacific. None of the models allow for that time lag and “If you don’t have that in your model, your model is broken”. (as a pretty good paraphrase).
Hope that helps…
I think this picture of the Thermohaline deep circulation might also help:
When added to:
It’s pretty clear the water originates around the south polar current, then works it’s way up to points where it submerges and then returns as deep water currents. Add in various time delays and I think this idea ‘has legs’. I do note that the Thermohaline Circulation has some bits looking like they go in the opposite direction of some of the surface currents on the other map, so I think there is an elevation detail that needs working out too. Perhaps someone already has a combined ocean currents model somewhere. Hmmm….
I’m also wondering if these tie to the cycles of PDO / AMO as time lags make different areas colder and warmer and if the making of “global averages” hides the important bit of information about leading / lagging areas and reduces the precision with which “Regime Change” in the long duration weather cycles can be observed. If, for example, one could show that what happens in Chile shows up in Japan 5 years later and in both Nome and Jakarta 10 years later, that could be quite interesting.