A recent study has created a simple mathematical rule that can account for the timing of the onset of interglacials following ice ages over the past three million years. The rule is based on predictable long-term astronomical variations in the Earth’s orbit and tilt called Milankovitch cycles.
The source of the accelerating rise in atmospheric methane concentration since 2007 remains an open question. A recent study using satellite imagery suggests that the increase may be ascribed to increased fossil fuels and livestock sources in roughly equal measure.
The last deglaciation was characterized by increases in surface temperatures of 10-15 °C punctuated by millennial-scale warming/cooling periods, pulses of increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide and asynchronously increasing methane. A geospatial-temporal variance analysis reveals a global warming trend correlating with rising CO2 on which is superimposed second trend millennial-scale regional warming/cooling periods associated with variation in the strength of the Atlantic overturning current.
Air bubbles in Greenland ice cores are analyzed to compare changes in Greenland surface temperature and atmospheric methane concentration during a rapid warming event lasting 200 years during the last deglaciation. It is found that changes in Greenland surface temperature and atmospheric methane emissions occurred essentially synchronously indicating that this warming event included the tropics.