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How the Spike in Solar Flares May Affect Earth in 2012

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How the Spike in Solar Flares May Affect Earth in 2012

According to NASA, A solar flare is defined as a “sudden, rapid, and intense variation in brightness”, which occurs when “magnetic energy that has built up in the solar atmosphere is suddenly released.”

For centuries, solar flares have caused various calamities on Earth, such as disrupted communications, blackouts and unusual lights appearing in the sky.

In 1859, the most powerful solar flare in recorded history hit Earth and was observed by the English amateur astronomer Richard Christopher Carrington. It became known as the “Carrington Event”, or as the “Carrington Super Flare”.

The event occurred during solar cycle 10, the tenth solar cycle since 1755.

The powerful solar storm not only created auroras across the world, but also interrupted telegraphs for weeks. That was back in the mid-nineteenth century.

Can you imagine, with the modern reliance on satellites, how devastating such a major solar storm could be today?

Impending Solar Flares Will Affect Earth

This is the sentiment of many astrologers and experts, including NASA, who believe the potential for another extreme solar event is on the rise.

In June of 2011, NASA filmed the Sun roaring out a huge solar flare, which was ranked as a Class M flare, just one position below Class X, the most disruptive type.

In the wake of last summer’s solar flare, NASA warned that the sun is entering a particularly active period, and that similar flares are likely to follow the Class M flare of 2011.

In 2012, the sun is approaching the peak of its 11-year cycle, an activity known as “solar maximum”, whereby a few natural fireworks are predicted to take place, with solar activity expected to peak around 2013.

As we saw last summer, most solar flares only cause minor disruptions with power grids and satellites. However, NASA warns that there is a very good chance that a “monster” flare, like the one of 1859, could hit Earth.

In an article published in, Michael Hesse, chief of NASA’s Space Weather Laboratory at the Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland, wrote about the most drastic ways that a huge solar flare could affect Earth. (1)

“The worse-case scenario is an extreme event. If it were to happen and we don’t take any precautions, it would probably knock out our power grid for an extended period of time and destroy a sizeable fraction of our satellite infrastructure.”

“This is not something we expect to happen tomorrow,” Hesse cautioned, “But it’s like the impact of a hurricane on a specific location. You don’t expect it to happen tomorrow, but you might want to think about if it were to happen.”

earth solar

Solar Flares Could Cause Increase in Earthquakes

In what ways can solar flares affect Earth as we know it?

According to, when solar activity is intense enough to send solar flares or Coronal Mass Ejections (CMEs) into the Earth’s atmosphere, it will affect the Earth’s electromagnetic energy filed (EMF) (2).

Speaking to Natural News, Karl Shrijver of Lockheed Martin’s Solar and Astrophysics Lab in Palto Alto, warned that as increased solar activity may disrupt the electrical grid and electronic communication, this could affect food and water supplies on Earth.

Karl stated that it would therefore be a wise precaution to stock up on extra food and water in case, as Karl Shrijver put it, “We see solar storms, playing out on scales we scarcely imagined before.”

According to some researchers, the potential disruption and damage a huge solar flare could cause penetrates deeper into the Earth’s environment than just affecting power grids and communications, as strong solar activity can also unsettle the Earth’s tectonic plates and trigger earthquakes.

CME activity has been linked to recent earthquakes, including the Japanese earthquake of 2011, which was Japan’s most powerful earthquake since records began. That earthquake killed 15,844 people and injured 5,890.

A CME was released on February 15, 2011, and then another on March 7, 2011, just prior to the New Zealand and Japanese earthquakes.


Health Impact of Increased Solar Activity

Of course, while the majority of people on Earth spend daily life on the ground where the magnetic field and the atmosphere block out almost all of the harmful radiation and charged particles caused by solar flares, this is not the case for astronauts and airline pilots.

This is why the health issues that solar flares may cause also need to be addressed.

At the Cornell website, in an article titled “What are some of the effects of solar flares on Earth?”, author Amelie Saintonge writes that solar flares bathing astronauts, airline pilots and cabin crews in harmful radiation create a significantly increased risk of contracting cancer.

Of course, as many readers are likely aware, according to several Doomsday scenarios, in 2012, we will be presented with the Mayan Prophecy-fueled “end of the world”.

Unlike most other Doomsday predictions, this odd correlation between the time cycle in the Mayan calendar and the 11-year solar cycle, is actually based on scientific evidence.

Whether it will truly mark the “end of the world” or not, one thing is for certain – the swelling solar activity is likely to create at least a few interesting fireworks in the sky and maybe even on the ground during 2012.

(1) PC Mag
(2) Natural News
(3) Boise Weekly
(4) Cornell

(5) NASA
(6) Rusty Russ via Compfight cc


Originally published on

  • Candacelee2001

    this really awesome knowing what it is

  • Derpy Trollerson

    Solar flares are caused by global warming! I knew IT!

  • You got most of this right, but you should *really* think about retracting this howler:

    According to some researchers, the potential disruption and damage a huge solar flare could cause penetrates deeper into the Earth’s environment than just affecting power grids and communications, as strong solar activity can also unsettle the Earth’s tectonic plates and trigger earthquakes.

    No reputable scientist thinks this; please don’t fear-monger!

  • Thanks Ethan, and thanks for the heads up. It’s important to keep facts straight and I’ll be the first to fix the article if the claim isn’t supported by science. However, the following sources do support the claim. Can you counter?

    1998 Paper:
    Univ of Akron/Goodyear paper:

    “Solar activity, as indicated by sunspots, radio noise and geomagnetic indices, plays a significant but by no means exclusive role in the triggering of earthquakes. Maximum quake frequency occurs at times of moderately high and fluctuating solar activity.”

    Given, that quote is from the late 60’s, so probably not the latest science on the link, but the additional links above have some similar, interesting quotes as well.

    There looks to be enough evidence suggesting a link to me, or at the very least enough to show that you’re wrong when you say “no reputable scientists” thinks this….

    Thanks for your comment!

  • Mason

    I think this is not likely to happen. But if it did, we’d all be screwed. If the global power grids were down for more than a few days, all nuclear reactors and spent fuel rods would melt down. A scenario 200 or 300 times worse than Chernobyl, world wide. Solar flares are the only scientifically supported relatively likely way of the world ending in the near future.

    Even if this doesn’t happen, I am opposed to nuclear energy. Despite being a clean, reliable resource, it is far too dangerous. Accidents happen, and will continue to happen with nuclear power plants. It’s only a matter of time until the next meltdown.

  • Thanks for letting us know about your work Rob, and good luck with the pitch. I watched the trailer and have to say it looks fantastic. I hope one of the networks pick it up.

  • I once thought like others, in that the increased solar activity (coronal holes and solar flares) increase the earths temperature after impact, “I WAS WRONG” I failed to take into consideration the earths pole change and the fact our magnetic field is down 40 percent. After I took that into consideration things became more clear.

    Every time the sun erupts with earth directed coronal hole or solar flare, I noticed approximately 2 days after the eruption the temperatures around the weak spots in our magnetic field drops -20 degrees? My belief is that the flares are weakening our shield at an alarming rate and letting in a little solar air which is approximately -454.72°F (-270.4°C).

    This would cause the eratic behavior in our weather.

    If the pole shift does not move quickly during this solar max 2013 and 2014 we could fall into a mini ICE AGE

    Google pole shift and earths magnetic field changes


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