Sunspots: Least active year since 1913

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Sunspots: Least active year since 1913

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30 Dec 08 – (Excerpts) “As we've noted, 2008 has been a year of records for cold and snowfall and may indeed be the coldest year of the 21st century thus far. In the U.S., the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration registered 63 local snowfall records and 115 lowest-ever temperatures for the month of October.

“Global thermometers stopped rising after 1998, and have plummeted in the last two years by more than 0.5 degrees Celsius. The 2007-2008 temperature drop was not predicted by global climate models. But it was predictable by a decline in sunspot activity since 2000.

“When the sun is active, it's not uncommon to see sunspot numbers of 100 or more in a single month. Every 11 years, activity slows, and numbers briefly drop near zero.

“Normally sunspots return very quickly, as a new cycle begins. But this year, the start of a new cycle, the sun has been eerily quiet.

“The first seven months averaged a sunspot count of only three and in August there were no sunspots at all — zero — something that has not occurred since 1913.

"According to the publication Daily Tech, in the past 1,000 years, three previous such events — what are called the Dalton, Maunder and Sporer Minimums — have all led to rapid cooling. One was large enough to be called the Little Ice Age (1500-1750).”

               The article then tells how two Stanford researchers have found a way
               to blame that cooling, not on the lack of sunspots, but on man. It also
               quotes R. Timothy Patterson, professor of geology and director of the
               Ottawa-Carleton Geoscience Centre of Canada's Carleton University,
               as saying that he and the first-class scientists that he woks with  are
               consistently finding excellent correlations between the regular fluctu-               ations of the sun and earthly climate…the sun and the stars are the
               ultimate source of energy on this planet."

“Don't blame Dick and Jane — blame sunspots.”

See entire article, originally entitled “The Warm Turns”
http://www.investors.com/editorial/editorialcontent.asp?secid=1501&status=article& id=315533893763712
Thanks to Mike McEvoy, Tom Weatherby and Benjamin Napier for this link


 

 



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