Someone somewhere in some article / comment got me looking at the solar cycle data from NOAA:
It was weeks back and I’ve lost track of the pointer chain for who and where. I just left the tab open in my browser for a closer look “later”. Well, “later” got here. My first impression had just been:
So we’re at the bottom of a low solar cycle, so what.
Closer attention lead me to the “Oh Dear” that’s the “So what” part. The sunspots are “way low”, but fairly quickly. About 1/2 what they were three years after the last peak in the prior cycle (about 12 vs 25+) even if using the 2nd lower peak of the prior cycle. Low cycles tend to be long cycles, so this implies a lot lower to go. Then, looking at the AP values, they have NOT dropped to the bottom yet. We are NOT at the bottom, even though sunspot counts are at bottom like levels. That’s the “Oh Dear”…
IF the AP chart is saying what I think it is saying, that we have a few more years of decrease ahead of us and we’re at near nothing sunspots now, it’s a bit of a worry what we’re going to get in terms of solar activity. This ought to be enough to pretty much prove it’s solar output that drives the system, not The Magic Gas CO2; but I’d really rather not have snow in June… My guess is somewhere between “now” and about 2018 to 2020 we’ll have the effects whacking us. Probably already hitting high altitude and high latitude places given the snow and cold reports on Iceage Now website:
Over time, as lags get wrung out, we will likely see more cold and snow at lower altitudes and latitudes. IF, and it is a very big IF, this is accompanied by a slowing of the Gulf Stream (as it often has been in very cold times), that will show up as “summer like rains” in Florida winters. There’s a paper that found in lake sediments that things like pine / oak ratios change toward warmer in Florida when Europe is going icy. I think it is referenced here:
The original link is now a dead one and the replacement paper is named differently, so may not be the same as the original one. It would be nice to confirm if it is the same one, but I’m out of time for now. In searching for it named as originally, I came on this study of the same lake, but different isotopes / analysis and which references it (Grimm et. al. 2006):
It finds that during the depths of a Glacial period, Florida tends to wider winter / summer ranges as the coastlines move far out from their present locations. So fast swaps make Florida a bit warmer in winter, but as the ice builds up, Florida gets a climate more like that further north. FYI, “BSR” is: “(4) bacterial SO4 reduction (BSR),”
In the late Pleistocene, the Florida peninsula was approximately
twice as wide as it is today. During the last 20,000 cal yr, sea level
has risen as much as 130 m, resulting in shorelines that have progres-
sively gotten closer to Lake Tulane, particularly after sea level rose
above the Florida continental shelf. Consequently, groundwater
rose, ﬂooding soils that had previously been well above the water
table. Lake Tulane deepened, as did most other Florida lakes, many
of which had dried out during the galcial maximum (Jacobson et al.,
2012). If BSR had been important, that should be evident with
lower δ34S values. However, the opposite occurred (Fig. 2). Thus, we
rule out BSR as the main control. In addition, BSR could not impart a
trend to the entire 20,000-year record, as described above. A similar
argument applies to any other process of in-lake modiﬁcation of the
isotopic record, including diagenesis.
After the Younger Dryas (ca. 12,000 to 11,000 cal yr BP), the
difference between summer and winter temperatures in central
Florida steadily decreased, while mean annual temperature increased
(Grimm et al., 2006). Summer precipitation in Florida is dominated by
convective and convergent thunderstorms. In summer, land warms
enough to create convectional circulation. Sea water is colder and
sea breezes originate frequently. Sea breezes (on-shore) from both
the east (Atlantic Ocean) and west (Gulf of Mexico) collide over
land, rise, and form thunderstorms (Grimm et al., 2006). Some
12,000 years ago, the winter land–sea temperature differential was
too little for strong sea breezes and thunderstorm development. As
the coastline came closer, winter-time storms as well as summertime
convection storms could bring sea spray-derived, isotopically heavy S
to central Florida, resulting in higher δ34S values in Lake Tulane sedi-
ments. Disappearance of Ambrosia which coincides with higher δ34S
in the lake sediment, indicates that winter frost was absent during
the Holocene (Grimm et al., 2006).
My text from my article / link:
What I find particularly interesting about this one is that it shows that even Florida is anti-phase to Greenland. Mostly it is based on water, rather than directly on cold, but that’s fine. It finds that during the glacial (when Florida was about twice as wide as it is today), the way rains were controlled by warm / cold was about the same. When it is cold, not much rain. When it’s warm, lots of rain. Now that happens between winter and summer, then it shows up as a climate shift.
So every Heinrich Event shows up as cold in Europe, but wet in Florida (so the pine trees grow and the pine pollen spikes up) as Florida gets wetter and warmer. When it’s warm in Europe, Florida is more cool, so dry, and you get oaks. There’s a lot more in the article. Grasses and some other plants too. GISP Ice cores.
The key takeaways for me were simple. That 1500 year cycle keeps on happening. Though sometimes with a partial skip (weak cycle). It is water mediated with the Gulf Stream taking a break for a while and both Arctic and Antarctic deep water formation being involved. Something outside natural ocean oscillations drives it as it stays on the same periodicity despite a variety of ocean changes and ice changes and even strength of event changes. The metronome doesn’t shift much (though the effects sometimes skip a beat).
Whatever “it” is, it effects ocean circulation on a very wide scale, and the ‘backing up’ of the Gulf stream in particular, and other places in general, will cause various shifts of wet / dry and warm / cold to happen.
But perhaps most comforting, for me, is just the realization that a D. O., or Heinrich or even Bond Event while a global event has different local impacts. So if, right now, a Bond Event happened and England were starting to freeze over: Florida would be getting a bit warmer and have plenty of rain to grow tropical food plants. (So all you folks in the UK, get your passports ready and “Come On Down!!” ;-)
So IF this is the start of a major European cooling via a slowdown of the Gulf Stream / North Atlantic Drift and reduced energy delivery, watching for warming, more rain, and even milder winters in Florida / S.E. USA ought to be a confirmation of both the paper and the solar / cold link for Europe. Longer term, Florida cools off in the depths of an Ice Age Glacial (but doesn’t everyone in the Temperate belt?)
I think I need to plan another stay in Florida for next winter… If we go into a full on Ice-Age Glacial, it looks like Florida loses the hot summer thunderstorms (eventually as the ice builds up) and ought to be downright near ideal. Lots of added land as the coastlines move out too. So looks like the place to be if / when that happens. Colder winters will also thin out a lot of the imported tropical exotics there too, like the Pythons… (note to self: Bring gun with bird / snakeshot loads… carry knife on belt when outside down by the Everglades.)