The Water World

3 Jan 2013

At .... EM Smith is addressing his version of atmospheric science, the Water World. In doing so he expands by quoting Nur Shaviv at who says, 'global climate possesses a stabilising negative feedback. A likely candidate for such a feedback is cloud cover (quoting Lindzen 1997 and Ou 2001). If so, it could imply that the water cycle is the thermostat of climate dynamics, acting both as a positive (water vapour) and negative (clouds) feedback ...'. The co2 effect is being modified, all the time, by the water cycle (quoting Nemani 2002, Lovett 2002, and Lee and Veijar 2003). Nur Shivav then explores climate and the forces on the solar system exerted by the galactic environment, seeing in cosmic rays the possibility of climate drivers. Catastrophism, we may note, never enters the equation, so this might not be the entirety of the tale he weaves. However, Shaviv does say climate could be affected by the solar wind modulation on top of the galactic cosmic ray flux. Some of this is derived from Svensmark, who he also quotes at various times. However, he then says the pattern is not apparent in the 1990s and suggests satellite calibration at this time might have sullied the data. Is that wishful thinking? Solar activity, he says, (as it is understood at present we may assume), is not nearly enough to explain recent warming (and quotes various papers to that effect). Piers Corbyn, on the other hand, doesn't bother to go outside the solar system, seeing solar and lunar effects as a driver of climate and a factor affecting the positions of the jet streams as they flow around the globe. This appears to explain the wet summer and autumn in the UK and the hot and dry weather in eastern and mid-west USA in 2012. We may also note that as far as England and Wales are concerned we have had a rather Scottish year of the weather as all that rain would normally have fallen over northern Britain.

In spite of this it is an interesting paper to read, and not least as it supports a mechanism advocated by EM Smith a couple of years back in order to explain the disappearance of heat - flushed out of the oceans and the atmosphere. The paper is based on modelling and therefore the answers are derived from the input. When it comes to a starting point Shaviv has no choice but to adopt the uniformitarian model of the past - and the geological time scale inherent to that theory. We may wonder if what he is measuring is in reality a series of cosmic ray induced climate changes or a succession of catastrophist events, the peaks, with troughs separating them when climate or the environment quietened down. However, it is perhaps possible that these are not a series of random events but something near reality if we are to think in terms of enormous lengths of time having the ability to capture a signal that might otherwise be lost in the noise.