Chinese Study Puts Sun In Frame For Global Warming

Jun 6th, 2014 | By | Category: Global Warming, Research

Research from China published in a peer reviewed Chinese language journal claims that there is a strong correlation between solar output and the warming of the Earth and implies that the climate models used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) may have “underestimated” the impact of natural factors on climate change.

The recent study claims to demonstrate the existence of significant resonance cycles and high correlations between solar activity and the Earth’s averaged surface temperature during centuries, according to an accompanying press release. The press release also claims that a peer reviewer of this paper stated “this work provides a possible explanation for the global warming”.

This is a controversial claim and flies in the face of evidence presented by the IPCC and accepted by many climate scientists that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) have been the main factor driving up global temperatures in the industrial age.

The press release states: “climate models of IPCC seem to underestimate the impact of natural factors on the climate change, while overstate that of human activities”. It adds that the study “implies that the “modern maximum” of solar activity agrees well with the recent global warming of the Earth. A significant correlation between them can be found”.

The research by Dr. Zhao Xinhua and Dr. Feng Xueshang from Chinese state space weather laboratory is published in the peer reviewed journal Chinese Science Bulletin. The paper is written in Chinese with an English language abstract.

In their English language abstract (see below) the authors state: “During the past 100 years, solar activities display a clear increasing tendency that corresponds to the global warming of the Earth (including land and ocean) very well. Particularly, the ocean temperature has a slightly higher correlation to solar activity than the land temperature. All these demonstrate that solar activity has a non-negligible forcing on the temperature change of the Earth on the time scale of centuries.”

This research goes to the heart of the issue of the importance of the sun in climate change and also the issue of the so called sensitivity of the climate to changes in atmospheric COlevels. The implication of the research is that the sensitivity of the climate to increases in CO2 is less than that assumed in IPCC model forecasts and therefore that the sun plays a far greater role in influencing climate change than previously acknowledged.

The IPCC’s AR5 science report published in September 2013 states: “Nonetheless, there is a high confidence that 21st century solar forcing will be much smaller than the projected increased forcing due to GHGs.”

Here is the press release issued by the EurekAlert service of the AAAS. Note that Figure 1 referred to below is made up from the top two pictures on the right. And figure 2 referred to below is the bottom picture.

A recent study demonstrates the existence of significant resonance cycles and high correlations between solar activity and the Earth’s averaged surface temperature during centuries. This provides a new clue to reveal the phenomenon of global warming in recent years.

Their work, entitled “Periodicities of solar activity and the surface temperature variation of the Earth and their correlations” was published in CHINESE SCIENCE BULLETIN (In Chinese) 2014 No.14 with the co-corresponding authors of Dr. Zhao Xinhua and Dr. Feng Xueshang from State key laboratory of space weather, CSSAR/NSSC, Chinese Academy of Sciences. It adopts the wavelet analysis technique and cross correlation method to investigate the periodicities of solar activity and the Earth’s temperature as well as their correlations during the past centuries.

Global warming is one of the hottest and most debatable issues at present. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) claimed that the release of the anthropogenic greenhouse gases contributed to 90% or even higher of the observed increase in the global average temperature in the past 50 years. However, the debate on the causes of the global warming never stops. Research shows that the current warming does not exceed the natural fluctuations of climate. The climate models of IPCC seem to underestimate the impact of natural factors on the climate change, while overstate that of human activities. Solar activity is an important ingredient of natural driving forces of climate. Therefore, it is valuable to investigate the influence of solar variability on the Earth’s climate change on long time scales.

This innovative study combines the measured data with those reconstructed to disclose the periodicities of solar activity during centuries and their correlations with the Earth’s temperature. The obtained results demonstrate that solar activity and the Earth’s temperature have significant resonance cycles, and the Earth’s temperature has periodic variations similar to those of solar activity.

This study also implies that the “modern maximum” of solar activity agrees well with the recent global warming of the Earth. A significant correlation between them can be found.

As pointed out by a peer reviewer, “this work provides a possible explanation for the global warming”.

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