I have a question relating to the hot temperature this summer. There are 3 reasons that I can come up with:

  1. Chemical, greenhouse effect.
  2. Increased solar activity.
  3. Orbital Resonance. The Earth is closer to the Sun, due to gravitational pull from other planets.

Anybody know something about Orbital Resonance? The orbits are affected by one another as they line up? Particularly the larger ones like Jupiter, Neptune and Saturn?

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    $\begingroup$ We are at solar minimum: sidc.be/silso/ssngraphics and spaceweather.com We just came out of 22 spotless days. Solar output is down. $\endgroup$ Jul 29 '18 at 17:48
  • $\begingroup$ Suspecting effect of the outer planets to the weather of the Earth is essentially astrology. Your other two ideas are considerable. $\endgroup$
    – peterh
    Jul 29 '18 at 19:12
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    $\begingroup$ Are you talking locally or globally? Local hot summer is an Earth science question. Globally I don't think Earth had a hot summer. $\endgroup$
    – userLTK
    Jul 30 '18 at 8:34
  • $\begingroup$ @userLTK Astronomical summer started only a month ago, and we've still got a couple of months to go. Even meteorological summer has a month or so to go. It's too early to tell if this summer will be warmer or not. $\endgroup$
    – user21
    Jul 30 '18 at 16:24
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    $\begingroup$ @barrycarter that's a typically "northern" POV. Here at the Antipodes, the meteorological summer is another 4+ months away (or 5 months ago). $\endgroup$ Jul 31 '18 at 0:01

Seen globally, the Earth is 0.75—1.0 degrees warmer than the average. This is what is modelled by warming due to raised levels of greenhouse gases.

Currently the sun is close to a solar minimum. Perturbations of the Earth's orbit by other planets do not significantly change the level of solar insolation. Also the ENSO is currently close to neutral. The hot temperatures across western Europe and East Asia are a combination of the effects of greenhouse gases, and the random influence of weather.

  • $\begingroup$ Melting arctic gets fingers of cold and hot moving farther too. $\endgroup$ Jul 30 '18 at 3:29

Short answer:

Local seasonal weather variation is statistical noise, driven in part by ocean currents, but year to year, it's generally considered natural variation or statistical noise. Greenhouse gas seems to play a role in greater variation, so that's probably part of it (as are Ocean currents), but statistical noise/natural variation is almost certainly the bigger reason why a single season would be unusually hot or cold or wet or dry in a particular location.

Long answer:

It's kind of an astronomy question with two of your suggestions, but the astronomy part is mostly irrelevant.

The NASA June 2018 Temperature anomaly map shows more than 4 degrees C above normal in parts of Russia/maybe Northern China and parts of Antarctica. July 2018 isn't out yet but you can check that link in a couple weeks.

Precise reasons for local warm spells is a little complicated and more Earth Science than astronomy, Earth has warmed, as noted in the other answer about 0.75-1.00 degrees C, but that's global average. Over oceans the number is smaller and over land it's considerably larger than 1 degree and some regions are warming faster than others. The greenhouse effect may also play a role in greater temperature variation.

Increased solar activity

As noted in the other answer, solar activity is actually down this year, but the sun is very consistent. The variation in radiative energy during an active solar cycle and a quiet one is about 0.1%. Not enough to make a significant difference in local temperature on Earth.

Orbital Resonance. The Earth is closer to the Sun, due to gravitational pull from other planet.

Orbital resonance has probably an even smaller effect year to year. It's true that if Earth is between the Sun and Jupiter, there will be a slight tidal effect that pulls Earth slightly further away from the sun, like a tidal bulge, The overall effect is pretty tiny on a year to year basis and I'm tempted to say virtually irrelevant.

Anybody know something about Orbital Resonance? The orbits are affected by one another as they line up? Particularly the larger ones like Jupiter, Neptune and Saturn?

This is a good astrology question, though I'm not sure it's specific enough to be a good question here. You're really asking about orbital perturbations from other planets. (orbital resonance is something else).

The Math behind orbital perturbation analysis gets pretty intense. Here's a question where it's answered somewhat on a single orbit. Over tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands of Earth orbits, Earth's eccentricity wobbles, mostly influenced by Jupiter and Saturn, and that eccentricity variation is thought to play a key role in the 100,000 year ice age cycle. But over single orbits the effect is tiny and not likely to affect seasonal weather.

There is, ofcourse, the butterfly flaps its wings theory, in which case, small changes like how much Jupiter moves Earth can have an effect in the sense that small input variations can lead to large changes down the line, but that's a local effect. Butterflies don't put more energy into the system, nor does every butterfly cause a hurricane, but they may be able to move them around, at least, that's what the non-repeating mathematical analysis tells us, so according to the butterfly effect theory, Jupiter might have an effect, but not a predictable or repeating one.

All that said, statistical noise is probably the real answer to your question. perhaps enhanced by greenhouse and affected by El Nino or La Nina, and for the most part, Jupiter and the Sun or not really factors, but it just might be that pesky butterfly in Africa. ;-)


The orbital calculations is way above my head . Since the question is stated "summer" I guess its locally considering the northern globe experiencing summer, this time of year . I live in the northern gulf stream area (norway) and this summer has been exceptionally hot . Ive heared that the Earth is closer to the Sun in December, but due to the Earth tilt, its winter in the Northern globe at that time. That tilt must however contribute to just an increase of distance from the Sun, to make a snowy winter. Or a temprature differance of + 30C summer to - 10C winter ( differance of 40C) . And I thought the "thugging" of planets might do the same. Orbital Resonance might be negligible, and might as well be a butterfly . Maybe the heat just has been a lack of clouds ! And the Sun has had free access to the surface ?

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    $\begingroup$ We are just past aphelion (furthest from the Sun) so distance form the Sun is unlikely to be the cause. It might seem odd that we are furthest from the Sun in the summer and closest in the winter but this a northern hemisphere bias. If distance from the Sun was the cause of the seasons then Australia would have the same summer as Europe and the US. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/… $\endgroup$
    – badjohn
    Jul 31 '18 at 16:40
  • $\begingroup$ So you suggest its the Earth tilt that is responsible for the Seasons, fair enough . A friend of mine posted this, on the feed . Caliming the Earth is in a hot Hydrogene and Helium gas cloud from (!) a Supernova remnant 10 million years ago . medium.com/looking-up/… $\endgroup$
    – Radar Blue
    Aug 4 '18 at 9:51
  • $\begingroup$ I believe that is the accepted explanation but primarily I am saying that it is very unlikely to be our distance from the Sun that is responsible as we are nearly at our furthest for the year. If it continues to get hotter (even in the northern hemisphere) up to next January as we get nearer then maybe it is the distance from the Sun. Let's see. $\endgroup$
    – badjohn
    Aug 4 '18 at 16:42

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