cooler temperatures and less sunspots

2 09 2009

We just enjoyed a few days at the end of August with highs around 78 here in central Arkansas.  Usually in August, that’s about the low for the night.  And this wasn’t from stormy weather — these were sunny days.  This was the coolest August I remember.  We even set records for lowest temperatures, so there is some factual basis for this being one of the mildest Augusts ever.

So what’s going on?  I thought global warming was beyond worst-case scenario.  That’s what I read in the news, anyway.  If this is worst-case, then they should redo their calculations, because they must have forgotten to carry a 1 or something…  There also seems to be less major hurricanes than normal, which goes against the predictions.   So what’s going on?

One thing that is making a difference is a lack of solar blemishes / solar flares.  In fact, there has been 53 days without them, which hasn’t happened in 96 years.  And the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) has figured out that increased sunspots dramatically increase temperature, even more than the increase in solar energy should explain.  They have concluded that sunspots heat the stratosphere, which amplifies the warming of the climate.  So could sunspots be the main contributor to global warming?  That might explain why global warming is actually happening on other planets besides Earth.  Also, ironically, the period of least sunspots — called the Maunder Minimum — corresponds with the Little Ice Age a few centuries ago.  I’m not saying the sun is the only proponent of global warming (or, should I say “climate change“), but I don’t hear that much by the people pushing for radical changes.  I have yet to be convinced it’s mostly man-made.

In related news, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce wants the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) to prove in court that the science behind their global warming forecasts is factual and accurate.  But the EPA has said it’s a “waste of time”.  I’m curious what will happen from this.  Let’s hear a debate from both sides, based on facts and not computer models with incomplete data.   And let’s leave the scare tactics and political lobbying out of it — this is supposed to be science.

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