Oct 17, 2008
Solar activity the primary driver of global temperature riseBack
Baghdad|Kiev|Asia|Europe|North America|China|France|Greenland|Iceland|Mexico|Norway|Ukraine|United Kingdom|Famines|Valley Of Mexico|Roman Warm|New Mexico|Newfoundland|Central Europe|Eastern Europe|Mediterranean
© Reuse this The period of global warming that we have experienced on our planet over the last century, which has seen a rise in temperature of some 0,6 oC, does not correlate at all with a rise in the concentration of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2), but is does correlate with solar activity. Indications are that solar activity is the primary driver of the variation in global temperature.
Further, earlier global warming periods were always accompanied by great human prosperity, and not by gloom and doom, as today's global warming adherents are forever saying. In fact, it was periods of global cooling that were bad for the world's population and for the environment as a whole.
In AD 793, the Vikings burst upon their European neighbours, starting with England. One venture took them into eastern Europe. There, they founded the Russian State at Kiev, in Ukraine, in 882 AD.
They also moved into France, as the Normans, and became a power in the Mediterranean as well as in Europe.
Two centuries of global warming then followed, from about 930 AD. This warm weather assisted the Vikings in taking Iceland from the Irish. The Vikings settled in Greenland and explored as far west as Newfoundland, in North America.
During this period, around 1000 AD, grain grew in northern Norway and grapes in northern England. The signs of warm-weather crops in these settlements puzzled modern archaeologists when they found evidence of these crops in what they thought had always been an iced-over region.
High in the mountains in central Europe, abandoned ancient mines were reopened when the area thawed. In what was thought of as the arid region of New Mexico, Amerindians of the Anasazi ethic group built canyon towns and irrigated crops as the climate warmed and rain became a regular feature of the area.
Rain also soaked the grasslands of Asia during the warm centuries, and nomadic horsemen thrived. This was great for the nomads but not so great for some of the other tribes in the region, who got beaten up by the nomads, who then acquired great mobility over the grasslands covered in food for the horses.
In China, a magnetic compass was invented – the earliest practical compass was described in a Chinese military manual of 1044. It was a magnetised fish shape that floated on water. Compasses soon evolved into magnets hanging on silk threads. The importance of the compass is that it allowed people to confidently sail far away from land in small ships.
Administrative reforms in China, starting in 1068, transformed the Chinese empire into the first economy managed on modern lines, relying on equitable money taxes rather than forced labour. The economy and the population boomed during the warm years, and government loans encouraged farmers to plant a new variety of rice from Indochina.
The Chinese seafarers continued to trade widely across South-East Asia and so spread their knowledge and goods, to the benefit of all.
In the meantime, in Middle America, around 1200, there was turmoil. Aztecs, from the north, entered the Valley of Mexico. They rose to power over their neighbours in about 1320.
It appears the reason why they moved and rose to power was the downturn in the climate, which began in about 1190. "Hey man, chill out" had a different meaning for them. Other sufferers from the cooling climate were the Anasazi, who were then forced, by drought, to abandon their canyon settlements. They moved to concentrate along the Rio Grande.
Starting in 1314, Europe was struck by repeated famines. The mountain mines were abandoned again, and the Vikings were frozen out of their settlements. By 1342, the Vikings' customary route to Greenland had been blocked by ice.
The Eurasian steppes became the scene of terrible military events. When the rainfall diminished from 1160, the numerous horsemen were happy for a warlord to tell them to attack the farming villages.
The break-out of the Mongols and their allies, the Turks, exceeded any previous break-out in ferocity and scope. In 1211, the Chinese Wall was breached. Baghdad, amid its decaying irrigation works, fell in 1258 to the Mongols.
A crash in the population of medieval Eurasia, already evident in China by 1290, was made worse by disease carried by the Mongol supply and trading caravans.
The Black Death first appeared among the Chinese in 1331, killing more than a quarter of them, and in 1346 a Mongol army in southern Russian spread it to Europe.
The Medieval Warm Period was past, and the Little Ice Age was really on its way.
Edited by: Martin Zhuwakinyu© Reuse this Comment Guidelines
Other Dr Kelvin Kemm News
Updated 34 minutes ago The value of copper theft narrowed by 22% year-on-year to R9.5-million in November, however, month-on-month the value increased by R300 000, from R9.2-million in October, the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s (Sacci’s) November Copper Theft...
Updated 1 hour 24 minutes ago The International Year of Crystallography 2014 (IYCr 2014) was launched worldwide on Thursday. Next year marks the centenary of the award of the Nobel Prize for Physics to Max von Laue (1879-1960) of Germany for his discovery (published in 1912) that crystals...
Updated 1 hour 53 minutes ago Engineering consultancy Mott MacDonald has been appointed as lenders’ technical adviser by Investec Bank and Absa Bank for the 50 MW Bokpoort concentrated solar power (CSP) plant, being developed in Groblershoop, in the Northern Cape. The two banks are the mandated...
Recent Research Reports
Defence 2013: A review of South Africa's defence industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s 2013 Defence Report examines South Africa’s defence industry, with particular focus on the key players in the sector, the innovations that have come out of the defence sector, local and export demand, South Africa’s controversial...
Road and Rail 2013: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2013 Report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move...
Liquid Fuels 2013 (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s 2013 Liquid Fuels report examines South Africa’s liquid fuels market, focusing on the business environment, oil and gas exploration, the country’s feedstock supplies, the development of South Africa’s biofuels industry, fuel pricing,...
Projects in Progress - Second Edition (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s second Projects in Progress supplement considers some of the major project developments under way, including high-profile energy and transport projects, as well as a few of the lower-profile public and private developments. What remains apparent is...
Water 2013: A review of South Africa’s water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2013 report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context, but also in the African and global context, and examines the issues of water and sanitation, water quality and the demand for water, among others.
Canadian Mining Roundup for June 2013 (PDF Report)
The June 2013 roundup includes details of the development of TSX-V-listed Aldridge Minerals’ flagship Yenipazar polymetallic project, in Turkey; the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission’s renewal of Cameco’s uranium mining licence pertaining to the Cigar Lake...
This Week's Magazine
Johannesburg-based locomotive solutions provider DCD Rolling Stock officially launched Phase 1 of its R240-million recapitalisation programme at its Boksburg manufacturing facility, last month.
Sales of electric cars should pick up once more such vehicles become available on the South African market, says Nissan South Africa (SA) chief marketing manager Ross Garvie. The local arm of the Japanese car company launched the country’s first fully electric...
Denel Land Systems’ (DLS) Mechem division is successfully marketing the latest version of its highly regarded Casspir mine-protected vehicle, the Casspir NG2000 series wide body ambulance. As its description says, this has a notably wider body than standard...
The infrastructure boom in Africa has seen investment in 322 megaprojects reach $222.7-billion, says professional services firm Deloitte in its ‘African Construction Trends’ report. Deloitte Southern Africa infrastructure and capital projects leader André Pottas...
ASME, the international engineering profession’s cooperative, educational and training, research, outreach and codes and standards development organisation (originally the American Society for Mechanical Engineers, founded in 1880), is seeking to improve the...