Scientists say global warming due to sun

I know that for those who have been following the debate this isn't very surprising, but it is nice to see this information making it out into the media. Just in time for Al Gore's new horror movie, "An Inconvenient Truth":

Climate changes such as global warming may be due to changes in the sun rather than to the release of greenhouse gases on Earth.

Climatologists and astronomers speaking at the American Association for the Advancement of Science meeting in Philadelphia say the present warming may be unusual - but a mini ice age could soon follow.

The sun provides all the energy that drives our climate, but it is not the constant star it might seem.

Careful studies over the last 20 years show that its overall brightness and energy output increases slightly as sunspot activity rises to the peak of its 11-year cycle.

And individual cycles can be more or less active.

The sun is currently at its most active for 300 years.

That, say scientists in Philadelphia, could be a more significant cause of global warming than the emissions of greenhouse gases that are most often blamed.

The researchers point out that much of the half-a-degree rise in global temperature over the last 120 years occurred before 1940 - earlier than the biggest rise in greenhouse gas emissions. . . .

So much for Al Gore's claim that time is running out.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

while this has been said more recently, check the date on this one.

4/07/2006 6:43 PM  
Blogger John Lott said...

I agree this isn't exactly current, but it is still something to keep in mind when Al Gore's movie comes out.

4/07/2006 7:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi John,
My Grandpa, now in his nineties, remembered exceptional weather in the 1920's or 30's, this was blamed on "wireless" disturbing the atmosphere, together with predictions of doom.

In the 1940's the exceptionally cold winters were blamed on high flying aircraft.

myself, growing up in the 1970's with cold winters, I remember the learned predictions of the next ice age coming.

I don't know the details of the science but do know that it would be a very brave phd student who interpreted the data in a way that totally undercut the basis of their sperviser's consultancy work and scientific reputation.

Even if they did commit such heresy, I doubt that it would survive review by self interested peers to make it to publication

I also know that the govts use "environmental levies" e.g. fuel tax, as useful revenue earners.

Our chances of hearing about unbiased research therefore seem slim

4/13/2006 5:05 AM  

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