They called it a “ground breaking study,” I call it rubbish. This new study claims that global warming began in 1830 just when the industrial revolution began to pick up steam (no pun intended). What they didn’t take into account was just around the same time the Earth was coming out of an unusually cold 40-year period caused by low sunspot activity called the Dalton Minimum (no relation to Timothy Dalton).
An international team of scientists, led by Associate Professor Nerilie Abram from the Australian National University, have analysed detailed reconstructions of climate going back 500 years. To their surprise, they’ve found that the current global warming trend began in the 1830s, further confirming that it is an anthropogenic, or human-induced, phenomenon. The study was published today in Nature.
Co-researcher Dr Helen McGregor, an earth sciences expert from the University of Wollongong, tells SBS Science the findings have a major impact on our understanding of how climate change works.
“If we know when global warming started, we know what the actual rates of warming are and we know when our climate is emerging above natural variability,” McGregor explains.
The scientists go on to explain they created a climate model (which have proven to be very flawed–for example none of these models have figured why the earth hasn’t warmed in over 18 years.). So to create this model they took into account other account climate model simulations and experiments (that’s right a flawed climate model using data from a flawed climate model–almost like a double negative), major volcanic eruptions and, most importantly, natural markers of climate variation found in places like corals, tree rings, and ice cores obtained from glaciers.
Dr McGregor says the study provides new, independent proof that climate change is indeed caused by human activity.
“One thing that our study provides is that it’s an alternative line of evidence,” she explains. “We’re not using thermometers and satellite records, we’re using natural archives of climate, so it’s a completely independent source of information that shows that climate change and warming is occurring.
“The central tenet of climate change, that the planet is warming, doesn’t change.”
Well not necessarily, because nowhere in their analysis do the scientists take into account sunspot activity.
Note: The sun goes through a natural cycle approximately every 11 years. The greatest number of sunspots in any given solar cycle is designated as the “solar maximum” and the lowest number is referred to as the “solar minimum” phase.