November 24, 2013

A strange possibility lurks out there

The sun is quiet. Too quiet.
The surface of the sun has been surprisingly calm of late—with fewer sunspots than anytime in in the last century—prompting curious scientists to wonder just what it might mean here on Earth.
The anomaly goes back even further than a century:
The number of spots counted since it kicked off in December 2008 is well below the average observed over the last 250 years. In fact, it's less than half.
And y'all remember what happened back then, right?
The last time that happened, during the so-called "Maunder Minimum" between 1650 and 1715, almost no sunspots were observed. During the same period, temperatures dropped sharply on Earth, sparking what is called the "Little Ice Age" in Europe and North America.

As the sunspot numbers continue to stay low, it's possible the Earth's climate is being affected again.
Wouldn't it be amazing if global warming came just in time to save us from an impending ice age? That would be totally bizarre.

And no, this doesn't mean we can forget about cutting our carbon footprint, though the GOP will certainly read it that way. Mindless scum are so predictable.

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