Thursday, June 16, 2011

Is a New Ice Age on the Way?

Short answer: nobody really knows.

The news of some scientists predicting the possibility of a new “little Ice Age” broke a few days ago.  I didn't post anything right away, as I wanted to read up on both the original story and reactions to it.  Here's my summary, after reading a lot of articles:
  • All the report really says is that what's being observed today looks an awful lot like what little we know about the beginning of the Maunder Minimum.

  • The authors of the report then speculate about the possibility that this indicates we're about to enter such a period.

  • It would take several years of consistently low sunspot counts before we could really say with any certainty that this was happening.

  • The pro-AGW crowd is quite predictably reacting negatively to this potential destruction of their world view.  I'd expect nothing else.  But just because they're predictable doesn't mean they're wrong.
Debbie and I own property in Southern California and in Northern Idaho.  If we really did enter a new little Ice Age, I wonder what that would do to property values?  Idaho surely would become less attractive.  Southern California I'm not so sure about – it probably depends to a large extent about what reduced temperatures would do to rainfall...

1 comment:

  1. An ice age would be great for my property values. Those northern states are gonna really suck!

    I would imagine that when we see less solar activity we see overall cooling trends and more solar activity that we see warming. i.e that solar activity has a greater effect on global temperatures than whatever we are doing.

    Regardless of outcome, if we do see a drop in solar activity like that, it makes for a good experiment.