Climatologists have questioned the existence of the little ice age

Climatologists have questioned the existence of the little ice age

Scientists from the University of reading believe that the concept of the “little ice age” is incorrect, because what happened in the period between the XVI—XIX centuries of climate change was minor compared to today’s global warming.

The details of the survey can be found in Astronomy & Geophysics.

Little ice age — a period of relative global cooling has not affected all regions, although, for example, in the UK it was very much cold winters. The results of our study show that for this process there is no single explanation, and that not all winters were holodynamic Liquedator research

The scientists noted that the temperature change for all time of the little ice age was not so much stronger than the temperature change over the past decade, caused by emission of greenhouse gases.

The researchers decided to analyze the connection between the Maunder minimum (a period of reducing the number of sunspots decrease solar activity from about 1645 to 1715, which is considered the cause of the little ice age), little ice age and the freezing of the Thames.

Experts have studied the records of chroniclers, in which the recorded temperature data and solar activity. Scientists also analyzed the ratio of isotopes in ice cores. The fact that the nature of both the chemical component of water — hydrogen and oxygen — contain not only the regular isotopes of O and N, but more heavy atoms of hydrogen and oxygen, deuterium (D). The content of heavy isotopes in the ice depends on the evaporation and condensation, which, in turn, is determined by the temperature. In the result, the isotopic composition of the ice depends on the temperature of its formation. The change in the ratio of these atoms has allowed researchers to assess how a change in temperature for several million years.

Scientists came to the conclusion that the description of the period as glacial is incorrect, because the temperature in this period fell slightly by 0.5°C. For comparison, during a major ice age, which ended about 12 thousand years ago, the temperature dropped to 8 °C.

Furthermore, the reduction or increase in the number of spots rarely preceded the onset of cooling or warming. This indicates a lack of connection between solar activity and climate. The freezing of the Thames has also not been associated with the Maunder minimum.