Tic Toc, the ENSO clock, the origins of natural variability in climate.

Let me introduce the actors in this play.

Chilean High 20-40S. Latitude, 240-290E Longitude. Maritime Continent 0-10S. Latitude, 120-180 Longitude. Aleutian Low 45-60N. Latitude 180-210 E Longitude. The blue line in the graph registers surface pressure in the region of the Aleutian Low. The orange line traces the difference in surface pressure between the Chilean High and the Maritime continent that is a name for the thousands of islands and the surrounding waters where low pressure prevails to the north of the Australian continent.

The difference in sea level pressure between Tahiti and Darwin is the basis of the Southern Oscillation Index. This is a good way of monitoring the movement of the centre of convection between Indonesia and the eastern Pacific Ocean. But this is really a local phenomenon that plays out along the equator. The bigger picture involves the atmospheric pressure differential that governs the rate of mixing of cold water from the south with the warm water of the tropics, the rate of flow of warm tropical waters to the sink in higher latitudes and the associated change of albedo in the mid latitudes.

The tendency for cold waters to upwell along the equator is tied to higher surface pressure in the South East Pacific and relatively low surface pressure in equatorial latitudes. A hydrostatic phenomenon involved. The warmth of the surface waters in the tropics is skin deep. The water is more salty due to evaporation making it denser and liable to sink depending on its temperature. Higher temperature makes this salty water buoyant. At depth. there is cold less salty water. When surface pressure rises in the mid latitudes it depresses the surface of the ocean locally, elevating it where surface pressure is low, tending to thin and spread the skin of warm water in the tropics. As the density gradient between cold and warm waters increases in the lateral domain, eddies occur with rotating circulations that lift cold waters to the surface.

The colours on the map relate to salt content. The blue zones indicate water that is low in salt content, typical of the waters from higher southern latitudes that are salt diluted. The yellow indicates up to ten times more salt due to concentration via evaporation. The dark blue indicates cold water with a low salt content emerging from the depths,
The salt content of the ocean charts the path of the surface currents. Salty water is recycled back across the Pacific via a countercurrent that is strongest north of the equator. Some warm salty water exits the tropics via the Kurosiwo current to the east of Japan and via the Gulf Stream that exits the Gulf of Mexico. Unusually, the Indian Ocean has a west to east flow at the equator and counter currents returning towards Madagascar. These currents flow into the southern Ocean in the vicinity of Cape Town in South Africa and across the Indian Ocean from Madagascar towards Australia. Those familiar with maps of temperature anomalies will see an identity between salt content and higher water temperature. Warm waters that exit the tropics towards higher latitudes are moving into a zone where watts per square metre of energy transmitted to space far exceeds watts per square metre incoming via short wave radiation from the sun. This is especially the case in the southern hemisphere. The energy travelling southwards is moving towards a ‘black hole’ for energy in the Southern Ocean. That energy will never return to the tropics. It will exit to space. The Earth system can be likened to a heat exchanger, gathering energy in the tropics and shifting it into the black holes of higher latitudes. This is an extremely efficient heat exchanger, more so than anything created by man. In addition, when air convects in the tropics it loses energy via decompression. That air returns to the surface in the mid latitudes, being compressed as it descends delivering a copious supply of energy to space. Both the sea and the atmosphere act like heat exchangers removing energy from the tropics and delivering that energy as long wave radiation to space.

The high pressure cell that I am calling the ‘Chilean High’ rotates anti-clockwise. The near surface airflow is constrained by the High Andes that has an average elevation of 4000 metres affecting 40% of the depth of the atmospheric column in terms of atmospheric mass. That gives rise to a push of cold water northwards along the east coast of South America where coastal locations have been cooling for more than 100 years. That cold water creates a fog that reflects sunlight. Cold water favours the descent of air in the core of the resident high pressure cells.

As the difference in sea level atmospheric pressure increases between the Chilean High, that is an extreme proxy for the mid latitude high pressure cells and the Maritime Continent, that is an extreme proxy for the equatorial latitudes, cold water upwells in the tropics and the anticlockwise circulation drives cold water northwards along the coast of South America. In this way, the La Nina condition that makes for good fishing in Chile and Peru is established. Upwelling of relatively salt free, less dense water, desalinated as it is frozen of the coast of Antarctica, transports nutrient-rich water into the photic zone, increasing phytoplankton growth and anchoveta production, more than 95% being used to produce fish meal. Peruvian anchoveta support approximately 50 percent of global fishmeal production and 33 percent of global fish oil production, making Peru the largest exporter worldwide. In 2009 Peru’s production plants in the coastal cities of Chimbote and Pisco, processed over 9000 metric tons of fish per hour and employed 47,000 workers. It’s not all good because La Nina also brings cold air from Antarctica, snow in the Andes giving rise to Influenzas and pneumonia. In the high Andes the suicide rate peaks in Spring as the Antarctic Ozone Hole migrates towards South America. This is not a new phenomenon. Its been like this for thousands of years. This is indeed a unique and challenging part of the globe.

To reiterate: When the Aleutian Low is abnormally active, (extreme low pressure) it shifts atmospheric mass from the northern Pacific Ocean to the Southern Pacific Ocean that increases pressure in the accommodating Chilean high. Then as the pressure differential across the Pacific increases it speeds the Trade winds, the condition we know as La Nina. Why doesn’t The Aleutian low shift that atmospheric mass to somewhere else in the Northern Hemisphere you might ask? Well, in winter the atmosphere of the northern hemisphere is resistant because its cold and dense. In summer, the Northern Hemisphere is a hothouse due to the heating of the atmosphere by the continents, the evaporation of cloud and the amount of long wave radiation that is streaming towards space, the entire atmosphere loaded with kinetic energy. The Ocean near Chile is very cold, the air above it is being chilled, fogs are endemic shielding the ocean from solar radiation and the area involved is very large. so the atmosphere in the southern Pacific is unusually accommodating. This type of behaviour in gases is described as Boyles Law. Air temperature is inversely related to pressure unless the air is constrained. Bear in mind that 90% of the atmosphere is constrained by gravity to below 10,000 metres in elevation but there is no lateral constraint, no wall at the equator to prevent the flow. The atmosphere is very thin. So, when heat is applied, its every molecule for himself in a constrained space and the kinetic energy carried by a molecule determines the space that it occupies while the number of molecules in the column determines local surface pressure.

In winter when the atmosphere in the Northern Hemisphere is cold and dense, be amazed that the Aleutian Low is shifting lots of atmospheric mass to the Southern Hemisphere and ask yourself this question. What is the energy source that drives this phenomenon? Something is delivering heat to the atmosphere, locally, that is enhancing kinetic energy of molecular movement. Its in the vicinity of the Aleutian Low and its not sunlight. The only other energy available is that being given off by the Earth itself. What is the ‘greenhouse absorber’ that is not uniformly distributed? We will return to that question later.

The last post on this blog asserted that as pressure falls below the 1948-2021 average in the region of the Aleutian Low the same thing happens in the Chilean High. This is an instance of behaviour that is different on a decadal or longer interval to that which applies on shorter, monthly time scales. On longer time scales, squeezing extra atmospheric mass into the Antarctic Trough may impair the vorticity of polar cyclones and their efficiency in shifting atmospheric mass to the Chilean High. So, on longer time scales, a fall in pressure near the Aleutians is associated with a fall in pressure over the Ocean adjacent to Chile and Peru. Over the last seventy years atmospheric pressure has fallen in both the Antarctic and the Arctic. Climate science does not acknowledge this. To do so would bruise the CO2 narrative by introducing the need to explain a source of natural variation. This is anathema. It’s poison.

But on a monthly basis the Aleutian Low shifts atmospheric mass to the Chilean High, as for instance in April, according to the chart below.

As the Northern Hemisphere moves towards summer, the signature of the Aleutian low shrinks and the high pressure zone that lives in winter, in its dwarfed state, near the Gulf of California expands towards the Aleutians. Nevertheless, via the graph, we see that the interaction and the relationship persists.

In June the Aleutian Low has disappeared, but on the left we see that, somehow, its still up to its usual tricks.

The invisible Aleutian Low is still active in determining the gradient in surface pressure across the South Pacific in August.

In October, the Aleutian Low shows up again in the surface pressure data. The polynomial curve indicates the manner in which the relationship between these variables evolves over time at least in October. Notice the big bump in the 1970s and the crossing of the curves that occurs after the bump. That’s a signature of the 1978 Climate Shift that ended a two decade cooling trend in the northern hemisphere and started the warming trend that delivered an immediate 2°C increase in the temperature of tropical waters and a 1°C increase in the temperature of the entire northern hemisphere, but gradually, over the last seventy years. Warming occurred in every month. This, in contrast to no warming in the Southern Hemisphere in December through to March, the warmest time of the year, when global albedo peaks with the winter chilling of the Northern Hemisphere.

By December, the Aleutian Low is in full flight again, with massive swings in surface pressure giving rise to mirror image swings in the pressure differential across the Pacific. We see in the map that the area affected by high surface pressure in the Chilean High is somewhat reduced by comparison with October. But, the Maritime continent sees a large expansion of the area affected by low surface pressure. So, the pressure gradient across the Pacific is enhanced.

Just incidentally, notice that the Antarctic Trough is active all year round, deepening in surface pressure in the winter. The Antarctic Continent pressure regime is deepest in August.

Summarizing, the pressure gradient between the Chilean High and the Maritime continent is slight in Southern Hemisphere winter but, significantly, between April and August it frequently dips into negative territory implying a reversal of the Trade winds. So, its plain that even in the depth of winter the invisible Aleutian Low is pushing and prodding. That’s why ENSO tends to manifest in late winter, build during the spring, and see the largest swings in the gradient of surface pressure across the Pacific between December and March.

The gradient of surface pressure across the Pacific is always, Summer, Autumn, Winter and Spring at the mercy of the Aleutian Low.

The Aleutian Low has this ‘Mother in Law’ role, an invisible hand dictating the play across the Pacific south of the equator.

The mystery is: Where is the Aleutian Low in the northern hemisphere summer months when there is no evidence of low surface pressure anywhere near the Aleutian Islands?

The detective work starts at the surface, in northern winter.

The Aleutian low is exhibiting an anticlockwise circulation close to the surface at 850hPa. This is the classic Polar Low of the same type that generates the Antarctic Trough. Courtesy of Null School. https://earth.nullschool.net/ Date 1st December 2020
Same day, 1st Dec 2020. At 500 hPa with half the atmosphere above and half below. A number of Polar cyclones are evident, better developed than at the surface. Most of these cyclones have their genesis in the Aleutian Low. Periodically a cyclone breaks loose to travel eastwards in the atmospheric flow. The atmosphere moves in the same direction as the Earth, spinning from west to East. That’s why the sun always rises in the East and sets in the west. So, the cyclones are periodically carried away in the atmospheric flow, a new one forming in the region of the Aleutians. Why the Aleutians? Possibly the proximity of the Siberian High? Possibly something to do with the temperature gradient at Jet Stream altitudes?
The Aleutian Low seen at 250mb, jet stream altitude, indicating surface temperature and winds. This is where the circulation is generated due to the steep density gradients associated with extreme variations in air temperature. Every polar cyclone has a warm core. All cyclones must have a warm core of low density air whether they are in the tropics or in high latitudes. Cyclones rotate clockwise in the Southern Hemisphere and anticlockwise in the Northern Hemisphere. That’s the way that they accommodate to the west to east flow of the atmosphere. Because these cyclones are so energetic, and so large, they propagate to the surface where, naturally, the core is cold.
At the 70mb level the atmosphere above the Aleutians is warmer than anywhere else in the Arctic. Elevation is 17000 metres. Warm air is emerging above the Aleutians and being carries anticlockwise in a high speed circulation at a speed of 130 km an hour.
On this day, the 1sr December 2020 the stratopause at the equator is at 45,0000 metres. At 10 hPa (30,000 metres) the Aleutian Low is seen to be the only ascending circulation, displaced towards the mid latitudes. The air between the ascending Aleutian Low and the Polar High that is descending is moving at a speed of 330km per hour. The circulation centred over the Arctic ocean is descending and very cold. The descending air is from the mesosphere. It is rich in chemicals that are hungry for oxygen and ozone. Over the Arctic, in winter, air within this cell of very cold air descends to the 300 hPa hPa level. This brings very cold mesospheric air to within 6000 metres of the surface, delivering a steep gradient in atmospheric density related to the difference in the temperature of the air within and without this cells of descending air. The mixing of the two is accomplished within Polar cyclones and the Aleutian low is the source of these in the upper troposphere and the stratosphere.
Above we have the ozone content of the atmosphere at 100 hPa, just above the 250 hPa level where the jet stream flourishes. The central map is for 1st December 2020. In these maps we see that ozone is drawn into the ascending circulation over the Aleutian Islands. The partial pressure of ozone peaks in January, February and March.
At 50 hPa we can see that the Aleutian Low is mapped by the concentration of ozone and indications of the circulation being generated.
at 1 hPa, the impact of the Aleutian low in elevating ozone to the top of the atmospheric column is clearly evident. What goes up must come down.
Date is 1st December 2020. See the warm zone above the Aleutians at this, the 70 mb pressure level which is conventionally described as the lower stratosphere. Cells of descending air carrying ozone into the upper troposphere are located in the mid latitudes, their core marked with the letter H. In these zones the temperature of the air at 250 hPa peaks in winter, when descent is most vigorous, rather than in summer. The partial pressure of ozone is greatest in winter. It is in these locations, marked with the letter H, that an increase in the temperature of the air will destroy cloud and allow more solar radiation to reach the surface. Notice that, even in southern summer, the Antarctic trough stands out as that part of the Atmosphere that exhibits the deepest and most extensive contrasts in air temperature at 70 hPa. If the Aleutian Low is ‘Mother in Law’ the Antarctic circulation must be God., It is via the Antarctic that the long term dynamics of the atmosphere are determined. The Mother in Law (the Arctic) can frolic and fume like the chop on the surface of the ocean but the swell is generated by God (in Antarctica.)
The partial pressure of ozone across the stratosphere is the major determinant of local air temperature and critically so, at jet stream altitudes. We see in this diagram that relates to the air at the 10mb pressure level where only 1% of the weight of the atmosphere is above, a marked increase in temperature of the air between 1976 and 1980. The origin of this change was a progressive reduction in the inflow of mesospheric air that erodes ozone, allowing the increase in ozone partial pressure. Ozone generates atmospheric warmth due to excitation by long wave radiation streaming to space with a wave length between 9-10 um. It’s evident that this shift in temperature occurred in winter. The temperature increase in winter was about 20C. In summer the temperature increase was 10C. The increase in the partial pressure of ozone, across the global stratosphere occurred in a matter of days, directly impacting temperatures through to the 300-400 mb level in the upper troposphere, and via a phenomenon known as stratospheric intrusions, as far as the surface. About a third of the weight of the atmosphere, the upper third, was affected directly and the lower two thirds indirectly via mechanisms like the shift in atmospheric mass that is accomplished by the Antarctic and the Aleutian Lows and secondly, via the injection of ozone into the troposphere where ozone can alter the temperature of local strata. As in cirrus, cirrostratus, and cirrocumulus, altostratus, altocumulus, and nimbostratus and so on.
The decline in sea level pressure over Antarctica has been episodic, remorseless and endures to this day. Deep short term declines, a matter of a year or two, are associated with El Nino events in the tropics like the El Nino of 1982-3 and 1996-8. The steep decline in surface pressure in the winter of 1976 reversed the tendency for pressure to increase in winter that had been progressing from 1960. The 1960s and 1970s was a time of cooling in the tropics and in the northern hemisphere that is the recipient of the energy that accrues in the tropics via the northward deflection of the equatorial circulation in the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. The Indian Ocean has no outlet to the north and it retains its warmth in the Southern Hemisphere. In eras where warming is the pattern, the Indian Ocean warms the fastest.
The increase in temperature at 10 hPa over the Aleutian Trough starts in the summer of 1976, datelined Antarctica 1976. A 10C increase in summer temperature occurred between 1948 and 1983. A 20C increase occurred in winter indicating that this increase in temperature is in part, home grown, due to a parallel loss of surface pressure in high northern latitudes. The loss of pressure is due to the extra vigour of polar cyclone activity that is accelerated as the partial pressure of ozone increases. Ozone is the origin of atmospheric heating in the stratosphere. Its not variability in short wave radiation from the sun that determines the temperature of the stratosphere, its the ability of ozone molecules to trap more long wave radiation that streams towards space, by day and by night for 365.25 days in a year, regardless of season. More molecules yield a higher temperature just like a two bar radiator is warmer than a single bar.
The Chilean High joined the ozone party in 1976 with a 4C increase in the temperature at 10 hPa in summer and a little less in winter.
The mid latitudes of the Southern hemisphere, at 250 hPa, managed a 2°C increase in winter, less in summer. Notice the enhanced variability when the temperature is lowest, which is in southern Hemisphere summer time when the partial pressure of ozone falls away under the influence of the Aleutian Low. That variability in summer is driven by the Aleutian Low. The variability at 20-40° South latitude is in the lead up to summer, starting in September, impacting albedo via change in mid and high altitude ice cloud density
This graph documents the range of temperature at different altitudes between the surface and 100 hPa at 20°-40° South latitude. The aim is to discover the elevation at which the presence of ozone begins to affect the evolution of temperature. The rectangles are identical in shape and size. It is apparent that from 300 mb the curve begins to flatten in winter and has a full blown reversal at 100 hPa, generally taken to be the level of the tropopause where temperature ceases to decline with altitude. The strongest winds are generated in the interval between 300 mb and 50 mb. This is where the jet stream is found. The jet stream forms at the margin of ozone rich air and that which is ozone poor. Ice cloud is present between 700 hPa and 50 hPa. Bear in mind that the figures here are annual averages from 74 years of data during which the climate system has been in a stage of continual evolution. On a daily basis, ozonesondes document the change in the ozone and moisture content that is expected between the surface and balloon burst altitudes at between 30km and 35km. Most ice cloud is found in layers, It is stratified. For good measure I show the temperature of the air at 100mb at 20-40North Latitude which also peaks in winter. But the reversal is about half that which occurs in the southern hemisphere, so its apparent that either the high pressure cells in the northern Hemisphere are less ozone affected or perhaps the area of land versus sea is affecting the evolution of temperature.

This is the way ENSO works. the manner of its construction and operation have nothing to do with carbon dioxide or the works of man in any way shape or form.

Climate Science is corrupt. It goes out of its way to ignore the dynamics that are documented above. That wouldn’t suit the CO2 narrative. Its poison because it introduces the question as to how much the temperature of the air is determined by natural influences including those which are external to the Earth environment.

If academic climate science is corrupt, that which is promulgated at the United Nations is utterly corrupt. The agenda is manifestly, power, control and the redistribution of assets and wealth. All worthy objectives, but the end does not justify the means.

Does this look cyclical and natural? Why is the degree of change relatively slight in June, July and August? Why is change so strong in December, January, February and March? Does this data suggest a reversible process? What does the increased differential in November and December entail for the temperature of the tropics if the trend of the last three/four years intensifies?

As Jo Nova remarks at her blog, ‘a perfectly good civilization is going to waste. ‘Perfectly good’ may be ‘over the top’, but I must agree with her.

Incidentally, if you are worried about the origin of, or the reaction of governments to the Covid pandemic, or simply want to avoid catching the disease, this story is a ‘must read’ : https://www.mountainhomemag.com/2021/05/01/356270/the-drug-that-cracked-covid

It appears that corruption is more pervasive than I fondly imagined.

I am not particularly fond of cars, tending to hang onto them till the no longer run. The handbook that comes with my most recent purchase, has more pages of than a valid description of the climate system should require.

A. Surface temperature in the mid latitudes is governed by cloud cover.

B. In the tropics, surface temperature varies according to the change in the input of cold water from high latitudes and that upwelling from below.

C. In the tropics more energy is acquired than is emitted to space. The difference goes via ocean transport into the black hole heat absorber that exists in high latitudes. Some is quickly returned to space via radiation in cloud free skies in the mid latitudes.

D. It has long been appreciated that air temperature in high latitudes depends on whether the air is coming from. Due to the deficit in radiation in relation to that emitted as long wave radiation to space, the surface is, on the average, cooler than the air above it. If the westerlies blow harder into a deeper sink of low surface pressure these latitudes will warm. Conversely, if surface pressure rises in high latitudes a cold wind emerges to chill the mid latitudes.

Radiation theory, and the notion of ‘atmospheric forcing’s’ might apply if the atmosphere that is strictly immobile. But the Earth is not like that. Radiation theory lacks a proper focus on the properties of gases. it denies any role for the stratosphere. It fails to appreciate the obvious role of ozone and the importance of the troughs of low surface pressure that form in close conjunction with the air that descends from the mesosphere. It entirely disregards the evolution of the modes of natural variability in the atmosphere and seeks to link them to the change in CO2. Current dogma ignores the variability in albedo to due to change in cloud cover.

In short, the current pretense is not science, its religion, probably the most influential religion that has ever existed, and sadly so. It pits man against his fellow man and makes children fearful for their future. It’s a pox worse than Covid.

Greenhouse gases are well mixed. Could radiative forcing by greenhouse gases be responsible for the pattern of change seen here? Why have the latitudes between 20-40 South, 50-60° South and at the Equator in the eastern Pacific cooled in the last few years while the Pacific to the north and east of Australia has been warming?

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