Prophecy in today's headlines

Apocalypse Sun Creates Stir Among Scientists




It’s the sort of news that makes one’s eyes glaze over and if our prediction is correct, Solar Cycle 24 will have a peak sunspot number of 90, the lowest of any cycle since 1928 when Solar Cycle 16 peaked at 78,” said Doug Biesecker of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Space Weather Prediction Center.

Yes, space has weather, in the form of solar radiation that varies with solar activity in the form of sunspots and solar flares. Biesecker heads an NOAA panel that keeps an eye on such things and released this latest report.

But this dry statistic has more significance for the earth and its climate than all of Al Gore’s gloom and doom about tailpipe emissions and rising sea levels. Whether the warm-mongers like it or not, the sun rules earth’s climate — always has and always will.

First noticed in the 1800s, solar activity runs in roughly 11-year cycles. Some are as short as nine years or as long as 14. The valleys are usually brief, a couple of years, but sometimes, for reasons not fully understood, they stretch out for decades.

In the 17th century, a 70-year period of little or no sunspot activity known as the Maunder Minimum spawned what has become known as the Little Ice Age, which extended from roughly the 16th century to the 19th.

Washington’s famous winter at Valley Forge was part of that natural phenomenon. So was Napoleon’s bitter retreat from Moscow. During the winter of 1779-1780, the Hudson River was solid ice for five weeks. Early settlers going West crossed a frozen Mississippi near present-day St. Louis in 1799.

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