Sun's impact on climate change quantified for first time

March 27, 2017, Swiss National Science Foundation
A solar flare captured by the Solar Dynamics Observatory, a satellite launched by NASA in 2010

For the first time, model calculations show a plausible way that fluctuations in solar activity could have a tangible impact on the climate. Studies funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation expect human-induced global warming to tail off slightly over the next few decades. A weaker sun could reduce temperatures by half a degree.

There is human-induced , and there are natural climate fluctuations. One important factor in the unchanging rise and fall of the Earth's temperature and its different cycles is the sun. As its activity varies, so does the intensity of the sunlight that reaches us. One of the key questions facing is whether these fluctuations have any effect at all on the Earth's climate. IPCC reports assume that recent is insignificant for climate change, and that the same will apply to activity in the near future.

Researchers from the Physical Meteorological Observatory Davos (PMOD), the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology (EAWAG), ETH Zurich and the University of Bern are now qualifying this assumption. Their elaborate are supplying a robust estimate of the contribution that the sun is expected to make to temperature change in the next 100 years. For the first time, a significant effect is apparent. They expect the Earth's temperature to fall by half a degree when solar activity reaches its next minimum.

According to project head Werner Schmutz, who is also Director of PMOD, this reduction in temperature is significant, even though it will do little to compensate for human-induced climate change. "We could win valuable time if solar activity declines and slows the pace of global warming a little. That might help us to deal with the consequences of climate change." But this will be no more than borrowed time, warns Schmutz, since the next minimum will inevitably be followed by a maximum.

Strong fluctuations could explain past climate

At the end of March, the researchers working on the project will meet in Davos for a conference to discuss the final results. The project brought together various research institutions' capabilities in terms of climate effect modelling. PMOD calculated what is known as "radiative forcing" taking account of particle as well as electromagnetic radiation, ETH Zurich worked out its further effects in the Earth's atmosphere and the University of Bern investigated the interactions between the atmosphere and oceans.

The Swiss researchers assumed a greater in the radiation striking the Earth than previous models had done. Schmutz is convinced that "this is the only way that we can understand the natural fluctuations in our climate over the last few millennia." He says that other hypotheses, such as the effect of major volcanic eruptions, are less conclusive.

Exactly how the sun will behave over the next few years remains a matter of speculation, however, since appropriate data series have only been available for a few decades and they reveal no evidence of fluctuations during this time. "To that extent, our latest results are still a hypothesis," says Schmutz, "and it remains difficult for solar physicists to predict the next cycle." But since we have been observing a consistently strong phase since 1950, it is highly likely that we will experience another low point in 50 to 100 years' time. It could be every bit as intense as the Maunder Minimum, which brought particularly cold weather during the 17th century.

Important historical data

The research project also placed great importance on the historical perspective. The Oeschger Centre for Climate Change Research at the University of Bern compared data series on past solar activity with other specific climatic conditions. People have been recording the number of sunspots, which correlates well with solar activity levels, for some three centuries now. However, it is much more difficult to quantify exactly how cold it was on Earth back then. "We know that the winters during the last minimum were very cold, at least in northern Europe," says Schmutz. The researchers still have a fair amount of work to do before they have a detailed understanding of the relationship between solar activity and the global both in the past and in the future.

Explore further: Solar activity not a key cause of climate change, study shows

More information: Future and Past Solar Influence on the Terrestrial Climate II. p3.snf.ch/project-147659

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Benni
2.1 / 5 (11) Mar 27, 2017
"One of the key questions facing climate researchers is whether these fluctuations have any effect at all on the Earth's climate. IPCC reports assume that recent solar activity is insignificant for climate change, and that the same will apply to activity in the near future."

If this time tomorrow the Sun were reduced to an energy level half of what it is presently, the resulting temperature drop in Earth's atmosphere would be blamed on AGW, of course this won't make any sense but that's the whole idea.
Guy_Underbridge
5 / 5 (9) Mar 27, 2017
If this time tomorrow the Sun were reduced to an energy level half of what it is presently, the resulting temperature drop in Earth's atmosphere would be blamed on AGW
Actually, I think most folks would have other, more pressing, issues to consider.
cantdrive85
2.1 / 5 (11) Mar 27, 2017
For the first time, model calculations show a plausible way that fluctuations in solar activity could have a tangible impact on the climate.

LOL! Who are these heretics? Didn't they get the Sun has no effect on the climate memo?
EarthlingToo
2.3 / 5 (12) Mar 27, 2017
What?! The Sun influences global weather patterns on this planet? Who do these so-called scientists think they are?

It is settled science that man is the biggest change agent of the ill-defined but oft-quoted "climate." We all know the solution to this is LESS PEOPLE! Nobody wants to say it, but that's the logical conclusion to man-caused climate change. No man = no climate change.
gkam
1.6 / 5 (7) Mar 27, 2017
"No man = no climate change"
--------------------------------

Okay, . . do your part.
cantdrive85
2 / 5 (8) Mar 27, 2017
"No man = no climate change"

--------------------------------

Okay, . . do your part.

Will do, got your address and we all know you have no guns to protect yourself. Be there soon to get rid of you.
Captain Stumpy
4.4 / 5 (7) Mar 27, 2017
What?! The Sun influences global weather patterns on this planet? Who do these so-called scientists think they are?
@denier troll earthling
because you seem to think no one is looking at the sun at all... perhaps you should look up the following:
Meehl 2002
Wang, Lean, and Sheeley (2005)
Meehl 2004
Foster and Rahmstorf (2011)
Lean and Rind (2008)
Schurer et al. (2013)
Shindell et al. (1999)
Svensmark (1998)
Lockwood (2001)
Vieira and Solanki (2010)

i stopped there

if your sources were scientific and not biased political sources, you would be aware of the science that is out there

....and you wouldn't be posting arguments straight off of some political hack site that is attempting to use emotion, fear or ignorance of the scientific method to make you believe BS
Benni
1 / 5 (7) Mar 27, 2017
"No man = no climate change"
--------------------------------

Okay, . . do your part.


I'd ask you to include me in your WILL George, but I just did a Skyview & a Streetview of your property & you don't have anything I want......Bye, Bye.
rodkeh
1 / 5 (6) Mar 27, 2017
Pure nonsense, the Sun has no effect on climate. This is just another feeble attempt to bolster an erroneous theory and perpetuate the AGW farce!
gkam
2.1 / 5 (7) Mar 27, 2017
"Will do, got your address and we all know you have no guns to protect yourself. Be there soon to get rid of you."
-------------------------------------------------

You do not scare me.

Try one of those who fell for "WMD!".
Solon
5 / 5 (5) Mar 27, 2017
Why is AGW still being talked about when Trump has eliminated it?
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.6 / 5 (5) Mar 27, 2017
You do not scare me
NOTHING scares you. Youre a psychopath. You were born without the capacity to feel emotions.

"You are not held back from any of your desires by guilt or shame, and you are never confronted by others for your cold-bloodedness. The ice water in your veins is so bizarre, so completely outside of their personal experience, that they seldom even guess at your condition.

"In other words, you are completely free of internal restraints, and your unhampered liberty to do just as you please, with no pangs of conscience, is conveniently invisible to the world.

"What distinguishes all of these people from the rest of us is an utterly empty hole in the psyche, where there should be the most evolved of all humanizing functions. [Martha Stout, Ph.D., The Sociopath Next Door] (highly recommended)"

-ie somewhat less than human.
gkam
2.5 / 5 (8) Mar 27, 2017
Screaming at the mirror does no good, "otto".

You have to do it with an analyst.
dudester
5 / 5 (6) Mar 28, 2017
For the first time, model calculations show a plausible way that fluctuations in solar activity could have a tangible impact on the climate.

LOL! Who are these heretics? Didn't they get the Sun has no effect on the climate memo?


"According to project head Werner Schmutz, who is also Director of PMOD, this reduction in temperature is significant, even though it will do little to compensate for human-induced climate change. "We could win valuable time if solar activity declines and slows the pace of global warming a little. That might help us to deal with the consequences of climate change." But this will be no more than borrowed time, warns Schmutz, since the next minimum will inevitably be followed by a maximum."

Read more at: https://phys.org/...html#jCp
zz5555
4.3 / 5 (6) Mar 28, 2017
It's not like this hasn't been studied before, so this isn't the first time the sun's affect has been quantified. A .5C drop is about double what other studies have shown (https://skeptical...iate.htm ). However, as this article points out, it only gives a few years breathing room.
EarthlingToo
1 / 5 (6) Mar 28, 2017
it only gives a few years breathing room.


The models have been saying this for decades; most of the predictions have failed miserably.
Captain Stumpy
3.7 / 5 (3) Mar 29, 2017
@science denier earthling-troll
i notice you're completely ignoring the science again... so lets look at your other opinions on this thread
most of the predictions have failed miserably
well, we know the models have error bars

so this is about probability - taking data that is measured and observed, then using it to make predictions

so, lets look at the model prediction results
I say
Climate models have also been accurately projecting global surface temperature changes - they don't need to be exact in every respect to give us an accurate overall trend and its major effects
the science says:
Risbey et al (2014)
CMIP5 models provide a remarkably good representation of 15-year observed trends
Roe, Baker
We have shown that the uncertainty in the climate sensitivity in 2 × CO2 studies is a direct and general result of the fact that the sum of the underlying climate feedbacks is substantially positive


i can go on a lot more, but you will ignore it
Captain Stumpy
3.7 / 5 (3) Mar 29, 2017
@science denier earthling-troll cont'd
The models ... most of the predictions have failed miserably
perhaps we should use your own tactic of refusing to post scientific studies to validate claims and simply link to blogs or other people?

considering you've never really refuted any of the science with equivalent science, which is how science works, mind you... then perhaps you should read the following:
http://initforthe...are.html

http://www.realcl...-models/

http://www.realcl...part-ii/

maybe then you will realise the fallacy of your argument you posted
Many professionals including myself disagree that it is MAN-MADE"
https://phys.org/...ate.html

if most of the scientists say otherwise - what does that say about the competence of your "professionals"?
howhot3
5 / 5 (4) Mar 30, 2017
If the solar input variance means so much to you deniers, please visit this link. I thank Captain Stump for providing us with such an excellent intellectual link;

https://xkcd.com/1732/

A must read.
Da Schneib
5 / 5 (1) Mar 30, 2017
We'd need 50 years of data to check this hypothesis (because that's all it is), and we ain't got 50 years. Global warming is a theory: it has made predictions and they came true.

Simple as that.

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