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The Case for a Quasi Sixty-Year North Atlantic Temperature Oscillation
Mazzarella, A. and Scafetta, N. 2011. Evidences for a quasi 60-year North Atlantic Oscillation since 1700 and its meaning for global climate change. Theoretical and Applied Climatology: 10.1007/s00704-011-0499-4.

What was done
Focusing their attention on the monthly North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) multi-secular reconstruction proposed by Luterbacher et al. (1999, 2002) for the period from 1659 onwards, the authors used the historical Length of Day record of Stephenson and Morrison (1995) and the global instrumental sea surface temperature record of Brohan et al. (2006) to argue that the time-integrated record of the NAO is "a reliable global climate proxy," comparing its oscillations with "those observed in the European historical record of middle latitude aurorae (Krivsky and Pejml, 1998) to claim that a ~60-year oscillation exists in the global climate and likely has an astronomical origin, as previously proposed (Scafetta, 2010)."

What was learned
Mazzarella and Scafetta say their findings and analysis indicate that "the global climate likely presents a ~60-year oscillation since at least 1700," and that "this natural oscillation was in its warm phase during the period 1970-2000 and has likely largely contributed to the global warming during this period," which finding, in their words, "confirms a quasi 60-year cycle in the climate system that further confirms the result of Loehle and Scafetta (2011)," i.e., that "the climate models used by the IPCC have significantly overestimated the anthropogenic effect on climate since 1950 by three to four times." And we also note, in this regard, that the several real-world or "natural" experiments of Idso (1998) suggest that even the anthropogenic-induced warming component of Loehle and Scafetta is likely too large.

What it means
Ever-accumulating real-world evidence continues to suggest that the historical warming of the past century or more has had little to do with anthropogenic CO2 emissions and is likely little more than the natural recovery of the earth from the naturally-induced global chill of the Little Ice Age (Idso, 1988).

Brohan, P., Kennedy, J.J., Harris, I., Tett, S.F.B. and Jones, P.D. 2006. Uncertainty estimates in regional and global observed temperature changes: a new dataset from 1850. Journal of Geophysical Research 111: 10.1029/2005JD006548.

Idso, S.B. 1988. Greenhouse warming or Little Ice Age demise: A critical problem for climatology. Theoretical and Applied Climatology 39: 54-56.

Idso, S.B. 1998. CO2-induced global warming: a skeptic's view of potential climate change. Climate Research 10: 69-82.

Krivsky, L. and Pejml, K. 1988. Solar activity, aurorae and climate in Central Europe in the last 1000 years. Bulletin 75 of the Astronomical Institute of the Czech Academy of Sciences.

Loehle, C. and Scafetta, N. 2011. Climate change attribution using empirical decomposition of climatic data. The Open Atmospheric Science Journal 5: 74-86.

Luterbacher, J., Schmutz, C., Gyalistras, D., Xoplaki, E. and Wanner, H. 1999. Reconstruction of monthly NAO and EU indices back to AD 1675. Geophysical Research Letters 26: 2745-2748.

Luterbacher, J., Xoplaki, E., Dietrich, D., Jones, P.D., Davies, T.D., Portis, D., Gonzalez-Rouco, J.F., von Storch, H., Gyalistras, D., Casty, C. and Wanner, H. 2002. Extending North Atlantic oscillation reconstructions back to 1500. Atmospheric Science Letters 2: 114-124.

Scafetta, N. 2010. Empirical evidence for a celestial origin of the climate oscillations and its implications. Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics: 10.1016/j.jastp.2010.04.015.

Stephenson, F.R. and Morrison, L.V. 1995. Long-term fluctuations in Earth's rotation: 700 BC to AD 1990. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A 35: 165-202.

Reviewed 23 November 2011