Category Archives: solar variability

Are Tibetan chironomids mesmerised by solar variability?

It’s been a while since I examined a paper that purports to present palaeoecological evidence for a climate response to solar variability. But last night, flicking through the recently published papers in Quaternary Science Reviews, I came across Zhang et … Continue reading

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You cannot smooth your way to significance

Imagine you have three 73-year long instrumental climate records that you want to correlate with solar activity in the last century. The instrumental records are noisy so you smooth them with a five-year moving average, and then you note that … Continue reading

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Incidence of papers reporting spurious correlations with solar variability correlates with solar variability

From the price of wheat (Hersche 1801) to childhood mortality (Skjærvø et al 2015), there seems to be no end to papers reporting spurious correlations with solar variability. As both these examples are published at solar maxima (±5.5 years), I … Continue reading

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Is there robust evidence of solar variability in palaeoclimate proxy data?

This is my EGU 2015 poster which I am presenting this evening. Poster B25 if any readers are at EGU and want to see it nailed to the board. With my coauthors Kira Rehfeld and Scott St George, I have done a … Continue reading

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Questions for Yan et al (2015), Willie Soon’s new paper

Willie Soon and Bob Carter are coauthors on a new paper in Nature Geosciences by Yan et al. It looks like an interesting paper exploring the movements of the intertropical convergence zone between China and Australia over the last millennium … Continue reading

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Did the floating bog quiver in the sunshine?

The current edition of The Holocene has a paper by Xu et al that reports a relationship between solar activity and millennial-scale failures of the Indian Summer Monsoon as recorded in peat deposits of Lake Xihu, southwestern China. Is this  robust evidence … Continue reading

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Sunspots and survival in Norway

Back in January, I expressed my doubt about Skjærvø et al (2015) who reported that children born during solar minima had a higher probability of surviving to adulthood, had higher fertility and higher lifetime reproductive success. Skjærvø et al (2015) argued that this was a … Continue reading

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