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Guest Post: Food Prices & The Solar Cycle

Tyler Durden's picture


Submitted by John Aziz of Azizonomics

Food Prices & The Solar Cycle

From that sun which is truly ‘of this great world both eye and soul’ we derive our strength and our weakness, our success and our failure, our elation in commercial mania, and our despondency and ruin in commercial collapse.


W.S. Jevons, 1909

With crop yields falling due to drought, and crop prices breaking out so much that some farmers are feeding their cows discarded candy, perhaps now is a good time to consider the slightly offbeat theories of English economist W.S. Jevons who believed that the business cycle is driven by the 11-year solar cycle:

W.S. Jevons and then his son H. S. Jevons believed that cyclical behaviour of solar activity cause changes in agricultural output and therefore general economic activity. This has been named the “sunspot” theory. Although sometimes regarded as bordering on the bizarre, it is not too farfetched. Non-irrigated agrarian societies obviously would suffer pronounced effects upon agricultural production (and therefore incomes) from climatic alterations. It follows that relative large variations in agricultural production would lead to variations in supporting industries (forward linkages) and then impacts upon industrial output which use raw materials from agriculture (backward linkages) and eventually overall economic activity.

Jevons backed his claims up with data:

Jevons finds that the prices of most agricultural products vary dramatically over an eleven year cycle. He cites English agricultural price data from the years 1259-1400. The prices of wheat, barley, oats, beans, peas, and rye reach a relative minimum in the second year of the cycle, an absolute maximum in the fourth year of the cycle and an absolute minimum in the tenth year of the cycle before recovering in the final year of the cycle and the first year of the new cycle. There does appear to be a rather obvious and consistent trend in prices over these eleven year periods. Jevons finds that the data (English wheat prices from 1595-1761) available to him in the Wealth of Nations (Smith, 1776) confirm similar although less marked trends in agricultural prices. Jevons does not discount other significant factors that might cause the rather predictable nature of these business cycles. Technological advancements, wars, and other factors independent of agricultural and weather cycles can and do exhibit great influence over the economic well being of a nation. Also consumer confidence or a lack thereof could cause significant variations in spending and employment. However, Jevons believes that these consumer attitudes may also be related to the sunspot theory and the corresponding droughts and bumper crops which may result. “If, then the English money market is naturally fitted to swing or roll in periods of ten or eleven years, comparatively slight variations in the goodness of harvests repeated at like intervals would suffice to produce those alterations of depression, activity, excitement and collapse which undoubtedly recur in well-marked succession.”

As Jevons alludes to — and especially in a world where most of us live in an irrigated industrial society — it would seem that there are many other significant factors in determining both long and short term variations in food price — technology shocks, wars, energy shocks, social changes. Food prices are a complex and multi-dimensional equation with a lot of variables.

But the impressive thing is that even in a modern agriculturally mechanised and industrialised economy there remains a discernable underlying association between food prices and the solar cycle:

Some might assume that this relationship is transmitted via precipitation, and that less rain (i.e. more drought) means less food growth, and therefore higher food costs. But this could work the other way, too — too much rain can also damage crops.

And the evidence suggests that more precipitation is associated with higher food inflation, and vice verse:

There is a much looser relationship with temperature:

So while Jevons was correct that there is an underlying association, there is clearly a lot more to it than the solar cycle especially in the irrigated, mechanised, fertilised modern agricultural world. Certainly, it does not seem possible to predict food price changes based solely on the solar cycle, even though it does appear to exert a significant influence.

And certainly we have passed through much higher periods of solar activity and drought without such an extreme breakout in corn (or soy) prices:

That chart, more than anything else suggests that the recent corn and soy breakout is terrestrial rather than solar in nature. The chief culprit remains growing ethanol usage:


As well as growing global corn-fed meat consumption:


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Thu, 08/23/2012 - 21:17 | 2732327 Daily Bail
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Jimmy Rogers on CNBC Asia last night.  He's still long food commodities.

Jim Rogers On Gold & Silver: 'Who Am I To Argue With Thousands Of Years Of Human Stupidity'
Fri, 08/24/2012 - 00:09 | 2732671 Michael
Michael's picture

Sun going back to sleep of late. 2012 is solar max year too. The eco-fascists need to learn a lesson they will never forget. Thank you Creator.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 08:10 | 2733147 WhiteNight123129
WhiteNight123129's picture

Well, well, well, I suggest you read the 1838 book from Thomas Tooke about the crops level between 1694 and 1702 (which was a particularly severe decline in sunspots) also the same Thomas Tooke about crops during the Dalton low at the beginning of hte XIX century. Not pretty...


Fri, 08/24/2012 - 00:20 | 2732685 ACP
ACP's picture

Also a positive correlation between solar storm activity and stock market volatility.

Not to mention:

Thu, 08/23/2012 - 21:38 | 2732388 Vint Slugs
Vint Slugs's picture

John A,

Maybe you can next compare the sunspot cycles with mean temperatures and thus enlighten the great unwashed about global warming.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 00:58 | 2732718 Fish Gone Bad
Fish Gone Bad's picture

I am still not convinced people (puppeteers or puppets), actually want to be enlightened.  Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the tooth fairy, and all Christianity pretty much proves that.  As long as there is money to be made, and leaders who allow it, it will go on.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 10:02 | 2733592 exi1ed0ne
exi1ed0ne's picture

Death: Humans need fantasy to *be* human. To be the place where the falling angel meets the rising ape.
Susan: With tooth fairies? Hogfathers?
Death: Yes. As practice, you have to start out learning to believe the little lies.
Susan: So we can believe the big ones?
Death: Yes. Justice, mercy, duty. That sort of thing.
Susan: They're not the same at all.
Death: You think so? Then take the universe and grind it down to the finest powder, and sieve it through the finest sieve, and then show me one atom of justice, one molecule of mercy. And yet, you try to act as if there is some ideal order in the world. As if there is some, some rightness in the universe, by which it may be judged.
Susan: But people have got to believe that, or what's the point?
Death: You need to believe in things that aren't true. How else can they become?

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 01:53 | 2732787 dunce
dunce's picture

Heresy, blasphemy, denier! How dare you suggest that the sun has any influence on weather patterns? Nazis, facists, whippersnappers, the sky is falling. Go long on marijuana.

Thu, 08/23/2012 - 21:46 | 2732409 Doode
Doode's picture

Crap - where is the statistical analysis. Put some t-values otherwise looks like a complete ema crossover junk.


Fri, 08/24/2012 - 00:18 | 2732680 Aziz
Aziz's picture

Did a t-test on Food Prices vs Sunspots post-1950 (i.e. the era of mechanized agriculture) yielding t-value of 6.9, i.e. statistically significant.

So there you go.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 00:30 | 2732691 Doode
Doode's picture

great - what is the coef and R2 then?

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 01:11 | 2732727 Aziz
Aziz's picture

r and r^2 are to do with absolute price level relative to absolute sunspot level. There ain't much absolute correlation there at all. You're not going to be able to predict much from the solar cycle than the fact that the solar cycle will often pull the price up or down a little from the pre-existing levels. I never said or suggested there was a strong absolute correlation, just that the underlying cycle is an influence. But for the sake of intellectual honesty:


r^2= 0.04981


Fri, 08/24/2012 - 01:17 | 2732740 Doode
Doode's picture

Those numbers suggest that the "influence" is a stretch hardly worth speaking of. At 5% r2 it is worse than past returns predicting future market returns - which is like 20% for 5 years ahead.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 09:32 | 2733448 Canucklehead
Canucklehead's picture

I don't know if you realize it but there is seasonality in weather, usually related to variations in solar energy reaching the earth.  Generally speaking, in the winter months the temperature is lower than that found during the summer months.  Use you math skills.  You will find a correlation there.

Math is nice when trying to pick out a tree.  Can you see the forest or do you only see trees?

...the sun wobbles... that is variability.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 09:38 | 2733471 johnQpublic
johnQpublic's picture

i thought we had winter because that was when there was more co2 in the air or sumthin


agw concept fail

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 07:21 | 2733029 machineh
machineh's picture

r and r^2 are to do with absolute price level relative to absolute sunspot level. 

Nothing prevents you from taking first differences -- as is commonly done with financial time series -- and computing the correlation between sunspot changes and food price changes.

But either way, absolute or first differences, the correlations are too weak to have any statistical significance.

Thu, 08/23/2012 - 21:51 | 2732418 vintageyz
vintageyz's picture

Piers Corbyn.  His theories include solar activity.  Plus, some very accurate weather forecasts.

Thu, 08/23/2012 - 21:53 | 2732424 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

The very idea that we are burning food in our gas tanks is ridiculous. The idea that a deranged policy like this can stay in place is beyond me.

Thu, 08/23/2012 - 22:05 | 2732440 Daily Bail
Daily Bail's picture

Exactly.  And it's disconcerting to say the least that in this Summer of intense drought and spiking corn prices, we can't even get Congress to consider a temporary moratorium on ethanol mandates.

Not even for 1 flipping year.  Bought and paid for congressional bullshit and no one cares outside of the alternative economic blogoshpere we all inhabit.

Thu, 08/23/2012 - 22:23 | 2732492 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

I think maybe 1 out of 100 people can put grasp in their heads that maybe burning food for fuel is a bad idea all around.

Thu, 08/23/2012 - 22:40 | 2732533 Aziz
Aziz's picture

It's totally ludicrous.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 04:40 | 2732910 falak pema
falak pema's picture

I worked in recycling plastics for ten-fifteen years. There is a whole continent of that in the pacific and atlantic and the US does not recycle much of; it just dumps it, alike the UK. This waste society is a cancer. 

Always knew that waste in our society is a source of wealth. I made it work too.

As for using food for energy the cancer grows; that's all it conveys to me. All the more so that the Brazil sugar cane model, bad as it is, is better than the US corn one from EROEI perspective. 

We are standing on our heads. We should use fossils, flared/fracked NG,  to make petrochemicals, and solar/wind to replace fossils. All the while converting coal to Liquids or gas.   

Viva SA/Venezuela, comes to mind. Lets hope the latter can develop the Orenoco better in EROEI and ecological terms than Canada and tar sands! 

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 09:41 | 2733485 johnQpublic
johnQpublic's picture

since i like to drink water, i say we shouldnt frack shit ever..ever


does converting coal to liquid release as much mercury into the air as burning it?

serious question

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 13:35 | 2734406 falak pema
falak pema's picture

nope, the presence of heavy metals contaminants is solved in the chemical transformation process. Not only metals, sulphur, Nox, particulates etc. etc. etc.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 15:15 | 2734896 Seer
Seer's picture

I've battled against ethanol for years.

Here's how to make blood boil:

Appeals court rejects challenge on ethanol Appeals court rejects trade groups' challenge to EPA rulings allowing ethanol increase

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A federal appeals court has rejected a challenge to Environmental Protection Agency decisions allowing an increase in ethanol content in gasoline.

In a 2-1 ruling, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit said trade associations of engine manufacturers, food producers and petroleum producers did not have standing to sue because they failed to show that their members are harmed by the EPA action.

Full article:

You know, I don't much care for the groups who brought up this challenge, but I sure as hell am NOT siding with the EPA! (and, I very much doubt that real environmentalists are siding with them either)

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 09:48 | 2733518 juangrande
juangrande's picture

That shit they grow is not food! Now the very idea that aerable land is wasted growing what they grow for whatever reason is beyond me! Oh wait, there's money to be had....

Thu, 08/23/2012 - 21:56 | 2732426 Yohimbo
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Thu, 08/23/2012 - 21:55 | 2732427 buzzsaw99
buzzsaw99's picture

seven years of feast, seven of famine. it has been going on since the dawn of time.

Thu, 08/23/2012 - 22:31 | 2732513 ghengis86
ghengis86's picture


Fri, 08/24/2012 - 15:41 | 2735054 Seer
Seer's picture

No, only since "recorded" time.  During glacial periods the interval of famine was likely a bit longer than seven years: OK, perhaps not for the hunter-gatherers, but anyone attempting to establish on-going domesticated agriculture, yes.

Thu, 08/23/2012 - 22:37 | 2732527 CharliePrince
CharliePrince's picture

next spring is the solar peak....pretty sure

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 08:39 | 2733230 Rudolph Steiner
Rudolph Steiner's picture

Yes, maximum predictions for Solar Cycle 24 Max are March-May 2013.

Thu, 08/23/2012 - 22:37 | 2732528 Plumplechook
Plumplechook's picture

What a steaming pile of shit.   When are the Tylers going to stop publishing every brain-fart by this clown Aziz?

Thu, 08/23/2012 - 23:51 | 2732624 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

If you don't like him don't read him. I don't read Charles Hugh Smith or Simon Black , but others do. I feel they are a waste of my time ( I do like to read the comments though).But I also don't bitch about them being published, I enjoy the fact Tyler posts a variety of reading material.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 05:08 | 2732931 NidStyles
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This is ZH, not If you don't like the article, don't read it. Keep your opinions in that slimy brain of your's.

Thu, 08/23/2012 - 23:53 | 2732656 plata pura
plata pura's picture

damn fine post. double bogey coming with the precession and fourth turning;; on a good note' living healthy soil produces more yield than that of man made fertilizers in drought. it also sequesters massive amounts of carbon. long compost tea 

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 00:55 | 2732717 adr
adr's picture

If you take a look at corn prices prior to 1970 they traded in a very narrow range compared to the last few decades.

Then the price really got out of hand after 2000.

Perhaps the out of control prices have something to do with investors who wouldn't have the slightest idea to do with a bushel of corn if it showed up on their doorstep.

The first event that drove global commodities higher was going off the gold standard, the second was the commodity futures moderization act.

The price of corn should have gone up this yar, but not to the extreme it did. Too many momo traders trying to frontrun the others, the result is insanity that will drivethe world further ino a depression it may never recover from.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 05:21 | 2732938 Disenchanted
Disenchanted's picture



"Perhaps the out of control prices have something to do with investors who wouldn't have the slightest idea to do with a bushel of corn if it showed up on their doorstep."


The financialization of everything...F.I.R.E. economies, have anything to do with it you think??

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 15:46 | 2735074 Seer
Seer's picture

During the Nixon era the policy, as advocated by then Sec of Ag Earl Butz (sp?) was to "get big or get out."

How many more examples of BIG = FAIL! are needed before we make the connection?

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 01:45 | 2732776 Joe A
Joe A's picture

Interesting. Other charts show that there is a correlation between sunspots and global temperatures.  The sunspot-food prices chart above shows that in some years the correlation is more profound than in other years. Why? The author states that too much precipitation also causes damages to crops (duh). Long term climate is just hard to predict. One disturbance somewhere can mess up understood climate patterns.

Point is that at the end of the 20th century the correlation is really getting off. What is the cause: AGW or AG-food-speculation or AG-using-food-for-fuel? Or a bit of all? Climate is more complicated than we think and for me it seems there is not one particular causes but a set of causes to climate and weather events. But using food for fuel is just insane.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 01:52 | 2732782 Aziz
Aziz's picture

The smart thing would be using waste for fuel.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 02:15 | 2732803 Joe A
Joe A's picture

Burning of organic waste or municipal waste is an option but with some pollution aspects although the wikipedia article says that problem is minimal. Ethanol from biomass is also an option. But nature also needs biomass for nutrient cycling so taking too much out is not a good idea. Question also is if there is enough biomass for it to become a viable fuel to fuel the world. The world needs to move away from a carbon based energy source. Until the world has mastered nuclear fusion or has created the hydrogen economy, there will be a basket of 'alternative' energies.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 15:57 | 2735115 Seer
Seer's picture

What the hell is "waste?"

WVO (Waste Veggie Oil) was once waste and then it came under lock and key and people ended up having to pay for it.  Hint: it became NOT a waste, but a product.

The height of this insanity was a proposal in SF of people depositing doggie doo in special containers to be picked up and then processed for energy.  How much fucking energy is going into the management/collection/processing/distribution (of end product [pardon the pun])?  Yeah, the "solution" is for everyone to get pets and go out walking them...

It's not that it's a bad idea to reclaim stuff.  What's bad is HOW it is done.  And usually the energy equation goes bad when you start moving stuff: keep it on the farm!

It's instructive to learn about how stir-fry came about and why it's so widely used in places like China.  It is a necessity because they apply "night soils" (human feces and urine) directly on their crops (in many places, though "modern" stuff like totally unsustainable chemical fertilizers are pushing out some of this practice).  Have to heat things up to kill bugs.


And just when you think you've got that input stream captured you'll find that it diminishes because the activities that create the waste are in less demand.  I think that a recent article showing the drop in garbage/trash shipping is telling on this point.

NOTE: garbage dumps will be the next resource mines... (I know that one day I'll regret cleaning up all the old dumps that predecessors left on my property, but I just can't stomach the shit now.)

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 02:08 | 2732797 CABill
CABill's picture

Usually well-intentioned environmentalism backfires and causes unforseen damage far greater than the original problem.  MTBE as a fuel oxidizer that poisoned groundwater, Ethanol that starved out animals and people, Ethanol that lowered ground water levels, removing wolves from Yellowstone, reintroducing wolves to Yellowstone, saving California delta smelt and drying up farms, the list goes on and on.  Humans can't think logically, and most especially those with an emotional agenda.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 02:24 | 2732808 Joe A
Joe A's picture

Compounded by the fac that some see a 'business opportunity' in everything, such as ethanol. It provides access to huge subsidies. Also take carbon emission trading. One country can buy emission rights from another country on the assumption that the latter country will invest in cleaner energies. Sometimes they do, sometimes they don't. The former country then washes his hands and does not have to tackle his own emission problem. These kind of constructions attract sharks. It will be a future bubble.

Environmentalism is not all bad. Many problems have been averted or solved but playing on an emotional agenda makes people make illogical decisions as you said.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 02:44 | 2732826 Me_Myself_and_I
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People need better education about what kind of environmental science is appropriate to pursue, vs. flim-flam science.  Your example on MTBE is extremely relevant;  but most hippie-activists didn't bother to research it properly.  Had they done so they would have discovered the giant chemical industry apparatus behind the scam that cloaked their intentions in Green Sheep clothing. 

Ditto for Ethanol and the agri-business farm lobby, who gave politicians talking points they could sell to the left while cutting checks to the Big Biz folks who kicked back campaign contributions.

People need to stop believing in magic solutions and start delving into the heart of these problems, and work on real solutions that curb excessive consumptions and conserve real resources for future generations. 

Anything less is just a lame cop out. 

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 05:43 | 2732898 Aziz
Aziz's picture

It seems to me like you read the charts without paying much heed to the words inbetween. The strongest thing I claim is a small but "discernable underlying association" (t-value of 6.94) between food inflation and solar cycle in the modern world. Obviously the total is a MUCH more multi-dimensional (nonlinear) equation. And I reject outright the premise that there is any association between solar cycles and corn, wheat and soy prices in the modern world. 

All I was doing was just examining Jevons' claim, and finding that there are a few points that translate to the modern world, but many which don't. The graphs that don't look very correlational aren't supposed to be correlational, because at the strongest I was showing a small underlying association, not any large correlation. I do not really agree much with Jevons.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 17:30 | 2735462 Seer
Seer's picture

Know that environmentalists and ecologists are different.  The former is about preserving natural resources for future exploitation, the later is about preserving things that will preserve humans.

Environmentalists are no more than a different shade of exploiters.  You can beat them as you like, but they're just advocating a slower death march on the growth path.  Ethanol, as you bring up, IS a perfect example: and if you want to really scratch your head: (WARNING: contains a picture of a girl/woman with very large breasts!)  Ecologists would look to close down BIG ag farming (and likely condemn big city water use [people here don't really like big cities, right?]).

"saving California delta smelt and drying up farms"

Oh the irony in this.  CA (and other) farms are draining water at amazing rates.  And because of the mantra of growth it's not a matter of IF, but WHEN the fresh water sources dry up (just look at what's left of the Colorado River, and what's happened to the Ogallala aquifer), "delta smelt" or otherwise...  However, and because I don't stand on any one side of the boat, there are, as you note, some really stupid things done (I'm just one to point out such everywhere).

“Men argue…nature acts”

- Voltaire

Silly humans...

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 02:26 | 2732810 analyzer_66
analyzer_66's picture

Coronal Mass Ejaculations BITCHEZ

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 02:39 | 2732822 Me_Myself_and_I
Me_Myself_and_I's picture

What the hell is this crap?

I see no relationship in the presented series, just a bunch of lines that wander down the street like a couple of drunks in a fight with each other over a 40.

The proposed relationships are preposterously simplistic.  The interplay of weather, fiat, demand, agribusiness-petrochemicals, price of oil, etc. all have to be considered in a multivariate model, not a bunch of grade-school 2x2 plots. 

Jesus Christ.


Fri, 08/24/2012 - 02:42 | 2732824 Joe A
Joe A's picture

There is some fussy correlation but not everywhere. And correlation does not imply causation. It is far more complicated than presented in these charts, I agree.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 02:48 | 2732829 Me_Myself_and_I
Me_Myself_and_I's picture

Thank you.

I analyze this shit for a living.  This kind of crap just pisses me off because it just tells me someone's trying to sell me a bag of snake oil at 30% APR.

Give me the data or shut the fuck up.

I'll tell you right quick what the key drivers are.  I don't care if I have to use neural nets, SVMs, bayesian models, logit models, whatever.  If there is a story in your proposed data I'll get it out and tell you what the secret sauce is.

But no more tinfoil hat nonsense.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 03:20 | 2732856 Joe A
Joe A's picture

It was not my article. I studied environmental sciences but am critical of this hippy environmental cult. Environmental problems are very complicated and there is no silver bullet although some simple solutions were succesfull such as the convention on Long Range Transboundary Air Pollution (LRTRAP) that took billions of tons of SO2 out of the atmosphere. I learned at Uni not to question the climate-alarmist professors. But I don't believe the climate-skeptics either. That whole debate got high jacked and polarised by policitians and interest groups. Aligning itself to Al Gore was the worse thing that the climate-cult did. Do I believe that CO2 alters the climate? Yes, proabably it does but there are many more variables that play a role. But the debate got polluted.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 17:51 | 2735494 Seer
Seer's picture

"Environmental problems are very complicated"


It's ALL political.  The "environment" isn't COMPLICATED.  Humans' interaction with the environment IS.  Further, "environmentalists/environmentalism" is still beholden to GROWTH, it just advocated metering out resources (whereas the supposed "other side," the "sincere" business folks, want to push at faster rates).  Go ahead, PROVE me wrong (simple math will nix your argument).

And that applies just as equally to the "drill-baby-drill" crowd as it does to the "environmentalists" crowd.

“The chief cause of problems is solutions.”

- Eric Sevareid

The simple story line is that nature will do what nature has done, the earth will enter into another glacial period, and when humans, if they survive, come out the other side they'll eventually be looking to decipher the odd drawings that today's survivors scrawled on cave walls.  Yeah, I could be wrong, humans might find nice, infinite amounts of chocolate nuggets at the center of the earth as they chew their way further into the earth in pursuit of elements to maintain their existence, guided by advanced iCrap technology of course.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 07:11 | 2733018 Lumberjack
Lumberjack's picture

Thanks for the "Science"!  The IPCC is about change their model again.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 09:12 | 2733373 Rudolph Steiner
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The IPCC ...hmmm... the work around the physics of  Rossby Waves, Schumann Resonance and cloud formation is  as yet considered an obtuse reference. Weather, the temperature and precipitation, while as far as we are concerned the last link in the chain, is also a factor in the feedback which contribute to itself ~ momentum money in and out of the dynamic, so to speak. So, with our faces pressed too firmly against the glass of this inquiry we strain to observe discernible outlines through the fog of our breath on the subject. Weather prediction, as far as we are able to figure in these times, is as much like inferring a snapshot out the window of a train traveling through countryside, and all the meteorologists are on the train. But then all observation is limited to its field of reference. We conclude the leaf cutter ant is part of some system or other ...

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 17:33 | 2735469 Lumberjack
Lumberjack's picture

Glad to have al the right people on the team...


This is a response fron Gail from another site that daels with such issues...


john says:
August 24, 2012 at 3:29 am

JP Morgan also ran the Oil for Food Program.

Maurice Strong of the UN Earth Summits fame was implicated in the “oil for food” scandal so we are really talking about a rather small number of people involved in all these scams. A bit of poking around the internet turns up another player.

Report to Congressional Committees: United States Government Accountability Office: April 2006

Lessons Learned from Oil for Food Program Indicate the Need to
Strengthen UN Internal Controls and Oversight Activities:
 [Too bad they hadn't learned the lesson not to give the UN IPCC money earlier, but it was stopped by the GOP for last two years. link GC]

[33] In response to auditors’ concerns that too much money was being concentrated at BNP, the number of banks receiving Oil for Food deposits was expanded after 2000 to include JP Morgan Chase, Deutsche Bank, Banco Bilbao Vizcaya, Credit Agricole Indosuez, Credit Suisse, and HypoVereinsbank.

So who is BNP bank? “….Europe’s leading provider of banking and financial services, has four domestic retail banking markets in Europe, namely in Belgium, France, Italy and Luxembourg.”

Bank BNP Paribas | The bank for a changing world

BNP Paribas’ commitment to sustainable development

Faced with the considerable challenges of sustainable development, every company has a responsibility. Our activities place us at the heart of the system, which means that it is essential that we act at all levels and in a significant way, to promote greater environmental, economic and social responsibility.

SInce when did banks get voted overseers of the human race?

The President of BNP Paribas is Michel Pébereau a very powerful man it would seem. So I guess that does make him out “better”

Michel PÉBEREAU:President, BNP Paribas and Institut de l’Entreprise
Michel Pébereau graduated from the Ecole Polytechnique and is an Inspecteur Général des Finances. He is currently Chairman of the Board of BNP Paribas, as well as Chairman of the “Investment Banking and Market Commission” of the French Banking Federation (he was previously Chairman of the French Banking Federation in 2002-2003), Chairman of the International Monetary Conference, Member of the International Advisory Panel of the Monetary Authority of Singapore, Member of the International Capital Markets Advisory Committee of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. He led the privatization of both the Crédit Commercial de France in 1986 and the Banque Nationale de Paris (BNP) in 1993. He was Chairman and CEO of BNP from 1993 to 2000, and set up BNP Paribas during his mandate in August 1999. He then became Chairman and CEO of BNP Paribas from 2000 to 2003, and made the decision to ask for the Board’s approval to separate both group’s mandates of Chairman and CEO in 2003. He has been Chairman of BNP Paribas since June 2003. He was Senior Lecturer from 1968 to 1980 and Professor for 20 years at the Institut d’Etudes Politiques (IEP) of Paris from 1980 to 2000. He has been chairing its Management Committee since 1988. Michel Pébereau is also Chairman of the Institut de l’entreprise since 2005. After having chaired the Committee on public debt in 2005, he now takes part in the general assessment of spending and policies that President Sarkozy decided to launch. As a great specialist in science fiction, he published critics of books in La Recherche magazine during many years, and today in the Sunday paper Le Journal du Dimanche

A specialist in Science Fiction??? So now we know how they are coming up with all this stuff!

When you read this Annual Report, remember commodities future trading islinked to the food riots in 2008 and derivative products are linked to the economic crash and Forclosuregate in the USA.


Commodities and Energy Financing

Thanks to the experience and quality of both the BNP and the Paribas teams, the Group plays a dominant role in the global commodities financing market, including natural resources (energy, steel/non-ferrous metals) and agricultural and tropical commodities. The Group offers a wide range of products, including transaction financing, structured financing, hedging instruments, loans secured by oil reserves and syndicated loans, to the various players in the chain, from the producer to the distributor and the end-user.

Recognized Expertise

In 1999, BNP Paribas was selected to participate in a number of major projects, including the United Nations’ USD 7 billion “food for oil” program and a large-scale restructuring of export pre-financing systems, especially in producer countries such as Iran, Angola and Congo, where BNP Paribas is considered as one of the leading financial players. BNP Paribas also arranged several import programs for selected counterparties in emerging markets, including Brazil.

A global Leader
The combined BNP Paribas team of 400 commodities and energy financing specialists has raised the expanded Group to the leadership position worldwide. New avenues of growth are opening up for cross sales of derivative products to existing clients…..


Lastly, the business line will actively tap cross-selling opportunities and expand its product range to include commodities futures and other derivatives, in order to create new opportunities for the entire Corporate and Investment Banking division.

In France, BNP Paribas played a key role in several very large-scale capital markets transactions, including the Total Fina/Elf merger in the oil industry,…. Companies in the media-telecoms and technology sectors were extremely active on the markets during 1999 and many of them chose BNP Paribas as their advisor….

Paribas contributed actively to bringing new issuers to the euro market, such as Enron Corp., an oil company based in Houston, which carried out a EUR 400 million bond issue rated BBB….
…In France, BNP Paribas played a key role in several very large-scale capital markets transactions, including the Total Fina/Elf merger in the oil industry

Do not forget ENRON was neck deep in the Cap ‘n Trade Scam. From the National Review no less Al Gore’s Inconvenient Enron

And Pat Frank, thanks for bring us up to date on the latest iteration of the climate models.

As far as I am concerned they are way way ahead of themselves. They have not even identified all the various possible parameters yet. Sort of like a blind man building a model of an elephant who hasn’t gotten past investigating the tail and thinks it looks like a snake.

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 07:31 | 2733050 Praetor
Praetor's picture

This weak correlation appears to happen every 12 years.I blame Jupiter. Lets have a Jovial time shall we?

Fri, 08/24/2012 - 08:52 | 2733264 Rudolph Steiner
Rudolph Steiner's picture
  1. The sunspot cycle is caused by the flip of the solar magnetic field approximately every 11 years (close to the 11.86 year period of Jupiter's orbit). The exact reasons why the Sun's field flips are not known, but it has it's basis in irregularities in the plasma dynamo at the core of the Sun that generates the magnetic field. It seems plausible that tidal effects from Jupiter are one of the perturbations that cause these irregularities, but not the only one. The earth's magnetic field flips as well, although not as regularly as the Sun's, and lunar tidal effects probably contribute.

Too, the work of a German fellow by the name of Landescheidt back at the turn of this century predicting el nino's and the like is quite interesting along these lines of planets-sun-torques as correlative to weather and precipitation....

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